The Q&A Archives: Wilting Leaves On A ''red Star'' Cordyline

Question: We have a ''red star'' cordyline planted into a terracotta
pot situated in a border next to a wooden fence. The bottom
section of leaves are drooping over the pots edge & are starting to 'yellow''.

Q. what do you think is the matter & how do we remedy the problem ?

PS. it was planted in compost with broken clay pot pieces i the bottom to aid drainage, it is watered very infrequently. The pot is approx 12" diameter by 14" deep.

Answer: Most people know the Cordyline as the 'Ti Plant'. These are the plants that are started from logs or stems imported from Hawaii. There is some confusion as to whether the plant is 'Red Dracaena' or a true Cordyline, which is related to the Yucca. Whatever the true name of your plant, it will thrive in bright light, but not direct sunlight. Keep the potting soil moist, except in winter, but don't allow it to dry out completely then, either. You can mist the leaves occasionally to provide the humidity it likes. A general rule of thumb is to fertilize plants only when they're actively growing, not to make them grow. And, since the roots are held captive within the pot, fertilize sparingly or you may burn the roots. It's usually best to dilute the fertilizer and use it twice as often than to give it a big dose all at once. With the proper exposure and occasional misting, the color on your Ti plant leaves should improve.

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