Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Tasman Flax Lily, Tasmanian Flax Lily
Dianella tasmanica 'Variegata'

Family: Xanthorrhoeaceae
Genus: Dianella (dy-an-NEL-uh) (Info)
Species: tasmanica (tas-MAN-ee-kuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Variegata

20 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Medium Blue

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer

Grown for foliage

Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Suitable for growing in containers

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:
Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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By Chamma
Thumbnail #1 of Dianella tasmanica by Chamma

By henryr10
Thumbnail #2 of Dianella tasmanica by henryr10

By yvana
Thumbnail #3 of Dianella tasmanica by yvana

By Chamma
Thumbnail #4 of Dianella tasmanica by Chamma

By jnana
Thumbnail #5 of Dianella tasmanica by jnana

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Thumbnail #6 of Dianella tasmanica by ismdavid

By Calif_Sue
Thumbnail #7 of Dianella tasmanica by Calif_Sue

There are a total of 13 photos.
Click here to view them all!


10 positives
6 neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive vossner On Jun 16, 2013, vossner from Richmond, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

Very striking foliage on this plant. Easily available in the Houston area and I see it planted in many places, to the point it might become overused, like photinias or Knockout roses. I think the details should be modified to say it is hardy to zone 9a. Low water, high water, low sun, high sun, it seems to take it all in stride.

The flower is completely insignificant. I have posted a picture of the flower zoomed to the nth degree--and it is pretty. But in reality, the flower is so irrelevant on this plant that it looks like debris when you walk by it. I systematically cut the stalks off b/c they take away from the overall beauty of the plant.

Positive MetaLark On May 5, 2013, MetaLark from Houston, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I have the variegated flax lily growing in a shady spot--but with a little dappling of sunlight part of the day. It is a very slow grower, and I nearly lost it one year due to overwatering. But now, at four years, it is looking beautiful, and I tell it so every day.


Positive TRUNK On Feb 8, 2012, TRUNK from North Andrews Gardens, FL wrote:

North Andrews Gardens Neighborhood - Oakland Park Florida. I love using this plant.It has become my new favorite plant to use. It feels light and gives the illusion that a small garden is larger. I am currently designing a pond and using this Variegated Flax as a 3 foot buffer so far. Thsi is a work in progress... with pygmy date palms

Positive yaxis132 On Jun 20, 2011, yaxis132 wrote:

I grow mine here in St Pete, FL in full, all day Florida sun. It is in an extremely hot and dry part of the landscape with very well drained sandy soil. It has never once suffered, and I planted it in the heat of the early summer and never once have added supplemental water except during the first week. It never browns and doesn't seem to be affected by our mild winter weather (to about 32 deg F a few days each year). i am so impressed at it's easy upkeep that i just bought 15 more for the areas where nothing else will grow. the blooms are non-descript at best, bit the foliage is striking and healthy. A++

Neutral spaceman_spiff On Apr 4, 2011, spaceman_spiff from Saint Petersburg, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

Just planted four "clumps" of this plant, after having been given them by a neighbor down the street. I must say I'm surprised to see the several comments stating that it should be in partial shade and not full sun; the neighbor who gave them to me (lives only 4 or 5 houses down) said it thrives in full sun (and when we say "full sun" in Florida when mean FULL SUN). So ... I planted all four of the clumps in spots that are mostly in sun all day long. I guess I'll find out how much the plant likes it as the eternal torturous summer approaches....

Positive Kiyzersoze On May 26, 2010, Kiyzersoze from Coral Springs, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

I love this plant. Never has dead leaves that need cutting, is almost always always in bloom, doesn't take over, and is pretty much care free. If you are using it to fill in an area it will take a while. It is not quick to spread.

Neutral donnacreation On Oct 24, 2009, donnacreation from Sumter, SC (Zone 8a) wrote:

This plant is marketed here in central SC, and the tags say cold hardy to zone 8a. My flax lilies turned to mush during this past winter, but they are still green and firm at their base. I'm hoping they'll return quickly this spring - if not, they aren't a good choice for my neck of the woods.
Update July 2010 - After a very cold winter my flax lilies have returned and are about 1' in length . Variegated japanese iris has a similar look and is better suited for my area.

Neutral yardchick On May 12, 2008, yardchick wrote:

As a landscape designer I have used this plant a few times in plans. I too love it's many attributes from color to drought tolerance. The one significant problem we have with it here is Rust. I know of designers here who won't use it because of this problem.

Negative LeslieT On Feb 15, 2008, LeslieT from Bellaire, TX wrote:

I've grown this lovely plant for several years in the Houston area under appropriate cultural conditions. I am plagued with heavy scale infestation which is much worse in shadier conditions. As an organic gardener, I am unwilling to use systemic insecticides and so far, horticultural oil has not helped. I am considering removing nearly all of these large, lovely plants because they've become so unsightly. This is extremely disappointing.

Positive Dinu On Dec 4, 2006, Dinu from Mysore
India (Zone 10a) wrote:

This is an absolutely striking plant for its brilliant foliage! It looks esp. lovely if a clump is grown on top of a small mound of lawn. I have seen this as part of a design in many a landscaping.

I have mine in the ground (it broke off the pot I grew in within 2 years) and I must say it is doing great and it does not ask for much water. It has not been attacked by any pest so far.

Positive figgybonsai On Jul 25, 2006, figgybonsai from Lakeland, FL wrote:

I work at a large nursery here in town and I must say that as hard as we have tried we cant keep it in stock, even in this sweltering summer heat it is thriving.

Positive shel On May 16, 2006, shel from Van Nuys, CA wrote:

Grows well in extremely dry conditions with no direct sun at all, but in bright shade. The variegation on the leaves got a very pretty pink cast to them after one year. Going into the second year with it,seems to mutiply by expanding clumps, so I have repotted it.

Neutral sterhill On Apr 14, 2006, sterhill from Atlanta, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:

I've not had much success with this plant - well, not yet. I moved three of them into more shade, cut back the leaves into fans, replanted in forest loam and I now have one new blade. I moved them as they seemed to be getting too much sun and the leaves were browning. Full sun does not necessarily mean full sun in Atlanta.

We'll see...

Neutral Alocasiaaddict On Jul 2, 2005, Alocasiaaddict from Interlachen, FL wrote:

Not growing as vigorously as I had hoped, even under ideal conditions. I will fertilize with time release to see if it becomes more productive.

Positive henryr10 On Aug 9, 2004, henryr10 from Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6b) wrote:

Ours is potted and gets only about an hour or two of full late afternoon sun. It is thriving.
Watering is no chore as it seems to love dry conditions.

A quite beautiful plant for partial shade.
It really lights up a dark area.

The strangest thing happens in dappled light though.
On a windy day or one w/ fast moving clouds it seems to disappear in the glare of the sun, only to reappear as the shade hits it.

I thought at first it was my vision going.
I've since had several people look at it and they see the same thing w/o prompting.
Quite odd!

Positive rosemarysims On Nov 19, 2003, rosemarysims from Mermentau, LA (Zone 8b) wrote:

I find this to be an excellent plant along the gulf coastal plain. It should be grown only in morning or late afternoon sun here though. This form is much more vigorous and satisfactory than the species. It's quite striking and better than most variegated iris we can grow for foliage.

Neutral Ultraviolet On Nov 19, 2003, Ultraviolet from Fort Lauderdale, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

I use this plant frequently in landscape designs in South Florida. Occasionally it gets covered in scale more often in heavy shade and less often in sunnier spots. The foliage is very striking.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Mobile, Alabama
Calistoga, California
San Jose, California
Van Nuys, California
Auburndale, Florida
Big Pine Key, Florida
Bokeelia, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida (3 reports)
Fort Pierce, Florida
Hollywood, Florida
Homestead, Florida
Inverness, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida (2 reports)
Lake Panasoffkee, Florida
Lakeland, Florida
Lehigh Acres, Florida
North Palm Beach, Florida
Ocoee, Florida
Oldsmar, Florida
Orlando, Florida
Pompano Beach, Florida
Saint Petersburg, Florida
Umatilla, Florida
West Palm Beach, Florida
Winter Springs, Florida
Stone Mountain, Georgia
Papaaloa, Hawaii
Lafayette, Indiana
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Deridder, Louisiana
Greenwell Springs, Louisiana
Lake Charles, Louisiana
New Orleans, Louisiana
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Cincinnati, Ohio
Saint Helena Island, South Carolina
Austin, Texas
Bellaire, Texas
Belton, Texas
Bryan, Texas (2 reports)
Galveston, Texas
Grapevine, Texas
Highlands, Texas
Houston, Texas (2 reports)
Richmond, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Spring, Texas (2 reports)

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