Celmisia cordatifolia var. similis


Celmisia: Apparently named after Kelmis, one of Idaean Dactyls, a group of skilled mythical beings associated with the Mother Goddess Rhea in Greek mythology. Kelmis, whose name means ‘casting’, was a blacksmith and childhood friend of Zeus, son of Rhea and later king of the gods. In Ovid’s ‘Metamorphoses’, Kelmis is described as offending Zeus who turned him into adamant so he was as hard as a tempered blade
similis: similar to another species

Common Name(s)

mountain daisy

Current Conservation Status

2012 - Data Deficient

Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2012 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2009 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, Paul D. Champion, Shannel P. Courtney, Peter B. Heenan, John W. Barkla, Ewen K. Cameron, David A. Norton and Rodney A. Hitchmough. File size: 792KB

Previous Conservation Status

2009 - Data Deficient
2004 - Not Threatened


Celmisia cordatifolia var. similis W.Martin



Flora Category

Vascular - Native

NVS Species Code


The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.

Structural Class

Dicotyledonous Herbs - Composites




Endemic. South Island: Wairau Mountains – Mt Richmond Only


Alpine. Probably the same as Celmisia cordatifolia var. cordatifolia (i.e. found growing on skeletal soils and associated peat within rocky herbfield).


Woody-based herb with short branchlets arising from a sparsely multicipital stock, usually just below the soil surface; living leaves in rosettes at the tips several rosettes. Leaf sheaths densely imbricate and compacted into a pseudostem. Leaf lamina 40-120 × 20-50 mm, coriaceous, at first erect but later decumbent, cordate to ovate; upper surface often sulcate, concolorous, yellowish to glaucous-green, glabrous or with scattered white hairs when young; lower surface lustrous, finely clad in pale buff hairs: tip sharply acute; margins entire, distinctly recurved, often with a rim of ferrugineous hairs; base prominently cordate; petiole up to twice lamina length, purple, covered in floccose ferrugineous hairs. Scape purple, clad in dense ferrugineous tomentum, up to 350 mm long; bracts numerous, erect, linear, monocephalous. Capitula up to 60 mm diameter. Phyllaries in several series, linear-subulate, erect, glabrous in lower part and densely brown-tomentose towards tip. Ray florets c. 25, ligulate, the limb linear-lanceolate, white. Disc florets c. 110, funneliform, yellow; tube with eglandular biseriate hairs. Achene fusiform cylindric, ribbed, 4-5 mm long, glabrous. Pappus unequal, 5-6 mm long, of 25-30 bristles.

Similar Taxa

Very similar to C. cordatifolia var. cordatifolia except that the leaf is thinner and more pointed, the lamina margins are prominently rather than weakly recurved, and the tomentum of lower surface is closely appressed, lustrous, and coloured pale buff rather than rather thickly felted, dull, and coloured deep buff. Although this variety was maintained by Given (1984) in that paper he noted that plants from Mount Fishtail also had similar narrow, sharply acute leaves. Celmisia cordatifolia var. brockettii differs from var. similis and var. cordatifolia by the distinctly narrower lanceolate-cordate leaf.


October - January

Flower Colours



December - April

Propagation Technique

Unknown. Probably easy from fresh seed that has been cold treated. However, like many Celmisia probably difficult to maintain in warm or humid climates.


Not Threatened

Endemic Taxon


Endemic Genus


Endemic Family


Where To Buy

Not Commercially Available.


Description based on Given (1984)

References and further reading

Given, D.R. 1984: A taxonomic revision of Celmisia subgenus Pelliculatae section Petiolatae (Compositae—Astereae). New Zealand Journal of Botany 22: 139-158.

This page last updated on 15 Aug 2014