Species

Fuchsia procumbens

Etymology

Fuchsia: after Leonhart Fuchs (17 Jan 1501 - 10 May 1566), a German physician and regarded as one of the three founding fathers of botany.
procumbens: sprawling

Common Name(s)

creeping fuchsia, climbing or trailing fuchsia

Current Conservation Status

2012 - At Risk - Naturally Uncommon

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 - At Risk - Naturally Uncommon
2004 - Sparse

Qualifiers

2012 - Sp

Authority

Fuchsia procumbens A.Cunn.

Family

Onagraceae

Flora Category

Vascular - Native

NVS Species Code

FUCPRO

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 Lianes and Related Trailing Plants

Synonyms

Fuchsia kirkii Hook.f.

Distribution

Endemic. North Island from the Ninety Mile Beach and Perpendicular Point south to Maunganui Bluff in the west and Kennedy Bay (Coromandel Peninsula) in the east. It is known as a naturalised plant on Kapiti Island.

Habitat

A strictly coastal species. F. procumbens has been collected from cobble/gravel beaches, coastal cliff faces, coastal scrub and grassland, dune slacks and swales, and from the margins of saltmarshes (in places where it would be inundated during spring tides). It is quite tolerant of naturalised grasses and may be found growing amongst dense swards of kikuyu grass (Pennisetum clandestinum Chiov.).

Features

Subdioecious, lianoid, creeping, glabrescent, prostrate shrub forming large scrambling masses. Stems woody, pliant, slender 3-6 mm diameter, up to 2 m long; branchlets even more slender. Petioles filiform, 15-30 mm long, glabrous or sparsely hairy. Leaves 5-20 x 5-20 mm, suborbicular to broad-ovate, membranous, glabrous to glabrate, sinuate, subserrulate; base subcordate; apex obtuse or rounded. Flowers solitary, erect, pedicels erect, 5-8 mm long, slender. Flora tube 6-12 mm long, golden yellow, tubular-campanulate. Sepals 5-8 mm, lanceolate or narrow-lanceolate, purplish at apices, sharply reflexed. Petals absent. Filaments 2-4 mm, slender, purple. Style 8-16 mm, > staminodes in female flowers, almost = to stamens in perfect flowers; stigma capitate to 4-lobed. Berry 15-25 x 5-10 mm, ovoid-oblong to obovoid, crimson to magenta often with a waxy bloom.

Similar Taxa

None.

Flowering

September - May

Flower Colours

Violet / Purple,Yellow

Fruiting

November - July

Propagation Technique

Easy from layered pieces, fresh seed and semi-hardwood cuttings. A remarkably adaptable plant that can be grown in most situations. It makes an excellent ground cover and is ideal for a hanging basket.

Threats

At various times regarded as seriously threatened, partly because some populations comprise only the single sex-type. However, comprehensive surveys throughout this species range have discovered new populations and confirmed the persistence of the majority of the older sites. Indeed its range has hardly contracted, and it would seem that the distribution of sex-types is natural. Because the species is so tolerant of environmental disturbance and weeds it is now regarded as biologically sparse. However, some populations have been eliminated recently by coastal development for holiday homes. If this trend continues then this species will probably qualify for a higher level of threat in the not to distant future.

Chromosome No.

2n = 22

Endemic Taxon

Yes

Endemic Genus

No

Endemic Family

No

Life Cycle and Dispersal

Fleshy berries are dispersed by invertebrate frugivory (Thorsen et al., 2009).

    

References and further reading

Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285-309

This page last updated on 19 Dec 2014