This is, in general aspect, similar to the better known P. tenax described below, but its leaves are usually only 2 to 5 ft high, less stiff and often drooping. So far as the cultivated plants are concerned, there is the further difference that the leaves are lighter green, rarely glaucous, and without the orange-coloured or red line on the leaf margins that is commonly seen in P. tenax (but not a distinctive character of that species as a whole). The flowers, too, are paler than in P. tenax, the inner segments being yellow or greenish yellow, the outer ones yellow or yellowish red. The seed-vessel is twisted (not so in P. tenax). Bot. Mag., t. 6973.
Native of New Zealand, from the North to Stewart Island; described by Le Jolis in 1848 from a plant brought direct from New Zealand to a garden at Cherbourg, and named by him after Captain Cook. Although it may share some habitats with P. tenax, it occurs most commonly on sea-cliffs and in mountain ‘fell-fields’.
cv. ‘Tricolor’. – Leaves 2 to 21⁄2 ft long, variegated with stripes of white and edged with red. Put into commerce by Messrs Duncan and Davies of New Zealand, who received their original stock from the Maoris.
cv. ‘Variegata’. – Leaves with marginal stripes of white. First Class Certificate when shown by the nurseryman William Bull in 1869.