Jack Spratt New Zealand Flax
Phormium tenax 'Jack Spratt'
Once established, needs only occasional watering.
We no longer grow this plant
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|Botanical Pronunciation||FOR-mi-um ten-AX|
|Lore||The Maori found that Phormiums bore leaves to as long as nine feet that contained strong fibers. These could be twisted into cordage and soft enough to weave into fabric for clothing.|
|Average Size at Maturity||Reaches 18 in. tall and wide.|
|Design Ideas||These little bronze strap-leafed plants are resilient yet lend a decidedly tropical character to any planting. Smaller size means they fit nicely into city gardens, courtyards and along side yards. Excellent reed-like plant for contrast around water gardens or as part of a dry streambed. Even goes well in rock gardens. Try clumps of them in very unusual high-profile bronze or hammered copper containers, or glossy Asian glazed pots that contrast with their upright character. Victorians loved to plant them in Roman-style pedestal urns flanking an entry walk.|
|Garden Style||Contemporary, Tropical|
|Landscape Use||Border, Container, Firescaping/Fire Wise, Poolside, Very Wet Areas, Coastal Exposure|
|Light Needs||Full sun|
|Soil Needs||All-Purpose Plant Food|
|Special Feature||Clump Forming, Dramatic Foliage Color, Dwarf Plant, Easy Care, Tolerates Poor Soils, Waterwise, Compact Form|
|Watering Needs||Once established, needs only occasional watering.|
|Companion Plants||This flax belongs in small gardens. Where there is a tropical theme, plant with other diminuitive exotics like Silvery Sunproof Lilyturf, (Liriope muscari 'Silvery Sunproof'), Heartleaf Bergenia, (Bergenia cordifolia), Spike Gayfeather, (Liatris spicata) and Miniature Gardenia, (Gardenia jasminoides 'Radicans'). Exceptionally nice with Peruvian Lily, (Alstroemeria-Hybrids) or Creeping Mahonia, (Mahonia repens)|
Follow a regular watering schedule during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system. For a neat appearance, remove old foliage before new leaves emerge. Divide clumps every 2 to 3 years in early spring.
This Plant's Growing Zones: 9-11