Māori Plant Use

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Plant Use Details 

Cordyline sp. Mauku.
FAMILY: Laxmanniaceae Cabbage tree family
BOTANICAL NAME: Cordyline spp.
FOOD: Colenso 1881 records a Cordyline species, much smaller than tī para, cultivated for its root.
''(It was in 1838-9, at Waikato.) Young seedlings were carefully selected and planted out, and in the following year the root was fit for use. The plant was then dug up, stacked in small piles, and dried in the sun; while drying the fibrous roots were burned off; and when sufficiently dry the roots were scraped and baked slowly, requiring 12-18 hours to cook them. These were chewed, or pounded and washed and squeezed, and used merely to extract the saccharine matter, which was eaten with their fern-root to give it a relish. I have never seen the plant itself, only its dried roots. It may be the same as Cordyline pumilio, but this I doubt. By the Maoris of Waikato it was called mauku''