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I have six large cordylines approx. 10 - 14 feet high which have been frost bitten. Each branch has lost it's leaves in the high winds (NW) and at the end of each branch is a six inch black area. Also all the trunks are oozing a large amount of black and white sticky substance either at the bottom of the trunk or half way up. What should I do and can they be saved? Many thanks. Sue Welsh



Sounds like many many other questions. The probability is they may of died. Wait till the weather warms and they may resprout from the base of the trunk. If by end of April, May time there is no sign of growth, i would assume that there wont be coming back. Seems to be the story across the UK this year after cold wet winter

27 Feb, 2011


The usual advice is to wait til June / July before deciding whether they've died.

27 Feb, 2011


This is the definitive answer on dead / dying cordylines that Bamboo wrote a couple of days ago. You are not alone - these plants have suffered all over the country and are on the sick list in gardens everywhere.

"Nothing you can do right now I'm afraid, its definitely a wait and see. First, check the trunks from top to bottom for soggy, oozing or rotting areas, particularly with orange gunk coming out. If the trunks are clear, then wait - you may find they put out new growth lower down the trunks, or from the base, or both, and then you can cut back to where the new growth appears. You may need to wait till June before new growth appears, if you can bear to. If you do have rotting areas, keep any eye on them - you may need to cut back beyond that point, but this is best left till April if at all possible. They are Cordyline australis, these plants, and they have been affected by the severe winter weather before Christmas. "

Good luck!

27 Feb, 2011


Thanks for feedback on cordyline probs. At least I know that mine isn't alone in looking and behaving sick. Will follow advice and wait and see. I'd be sorry to lose it as it's a reminder of my homeland.

28 Feb, 2011


Thanks for saving me the trouble Beattie, lol! How on earth did you do that, reproduce that answer I mean... you must be a techie whizz.
Kowhai, if you're really worried they won't survive, have a look in Tesco's in about March/April/May - they sell them for £3 (or did last year) as small plants. Provided we don't continue to have such arctic winters, they'll grow on and become large eventually, and if you don't need them because your other ones recover, they make great centrepieces in tubs during the summer...

28 Feb, 2011


Bamboo, I wrote out a whole lot of instructions, but decided they'd be of limited interest, so I'll send them as a PM. If anyone else wants to know, just PM me & I'll copy them to you too. :-)

28 Feb, 2011

How do I say thanks?

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