Phormium Black Adder

Striking Dark Accent Black Adder Phormium

  • Bold Form Catches the Eye
  • Erect, Sword-Like Leaves
  • No Sharp Points
  • Delightful Droop at Leaf Tips
  • Incredible Dark Burgundy Color Won’t Fade in the Sun
  • Lustrous Finish Reflects the Sun
  • Full Sun to Part Shade
  • Compact and Easy Care
  • Versatile
  • Excellent “Thriller” in Containers
  • Add Nearly Black Foliage for Cut Flower Arrangements
  • Tolerates Coastal Conditions
  • Moderately Drought Tolerant Once Established in the Soil
  • Resists Wind
  • Deer and Rabbits Don’t Prefer the Taste
  • Featured on Firewise Plant Lists

For an on-point architectural focal point for your garden, rely on one of the darkest Phormiums on the market. The incredible hue and form of Black Adder Phormium (Phormium colensoi ‘FIT01’ PP #20,451) makes a striking accent plant throughout your landscape.

“Touchable” blade-like leaves stand up straight without being stiff or pokey. The strappy leaves droop enchantingly at the ends.

A breeding breakthrough, Black Adder is one of the very darkest cultivars of New Zealand Flax.

Although the complex color is nearly black, it is burnished with a deep burgundy-red overcast.

The glossy finish helps protect the exceptional color from fading in strong sun. It can be grown in-ground, in containers, in full sun or partial shade.

Clump-forming Black Adder tolerates heat, salt, wind, and periodic drought once established if grown in soil. Rabbits and deer tend to leave it alone.

Compact Black Adder Phormium is a perennial with “personality plus”. Use it with pride to make a graphic visual statement in your low-maintenance landscape.

How to Use Black Adder Phormium in the Landscape

Use a single plant as a fantastic specimen in an outdoor container. Duplicate this treatment for a very modern statement along the length of a balcony, patio or deck.

Try a matching pair flanking either side of your front door to boost curb appeal. Your home’s exterior will be ready to grace the cover of magazines.

Use several plants as a colorful, low hedge to define your landscape. Plant 18 inches apart on center, measuring from the center of one to the center of the next.

Black Adder also plays well with other plants. Use as a high-contrast accent in a mixed shrub border; repeating their use in a sinuous ribbon of dark color.

Even Northern gardeners in colder zones can enjoy their handsome good looks of their upright leaves in seasonal containers.

Once Black Adder Phormium is established in your soil, it needs only occasional watering. Use in Xeriscapes, gravel or rock gardens.

This plant is listed on several state Firewise Plant lists. Use in your defensible zone to help protect your property.

Tips for Care

Plant in full sun or part shade. Black Adder needs at least four hours of direct sunlight for the best color.

Well-drained soils are a must, so elevate your planting in a raised bed or container if you see puddles long after a rainfall. Bring in a heap of additional soil and plant in that mound.

Pay careful attention to water the first season, and for the life of containerized plants. Give it water in prolonged droughts to protect your investment.

In late winter, remove older, damaged or discolored leaves out at the base of the clump. Do not shorten using straight cuts along the top. Rather, trim at a diagonal all the way down at the bottom.

Allow the leaf remnant to dry for a week, then come back and remove it completely. Try to enjoy this time with your plant as an exercise in mindfulness.

There is nothing as compelling as a properly cared for Phormium.