Cordyline fruticosa is an evergreen flowering plant in the Asparagus family, Asparagaceae, known by a wide variety of common names including Cabbage Palm, Good Luck Plant, Palm Lily, Ti Plant, La’i [Hawaiian].
^ Cordyline fruticosa, the pigmented decorative form.
It is a woody plant growing up to 4 m [13 ft] tall, with leaves 30–60 cm [12–24 in] long and 5–10-cm [2.0–3.9 in] wide at the top of a woody stem. It is native to tropical southeastern Asia, Papua New Guinea, Melanesia, northeastern Australia, the islands on the Indian Ocean, and parts of Polynesia. It is not native to either Hawaii or New Zealand but was introduced to both by Polynesian settlers.
Its starchy rhizomes, which are very sweet when the plant is mature, were eaten as food or as medicine, and its leaves were used to thatch the roofs of houses, and to wrap and store food. Leaves were also used to make items of clothing including skirts worn in dance performances. The Hawaiian hula skirt is a dense skirt with an opaque layer of at least 50 green leaves.