Hoheria populnea var. angustifolia (Raoul) Hook.f.
Vascular – Native
Trees & Shrubs - Dicotyledons
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.
2n = 42
Current conservation status
The threat classification status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2017 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS) – more information about this can be found on the NZTCS website This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2012 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: By Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, John W. Barkla, Shannel P. Courtney, Paul D. Champion, Leon R. Perrie, Sarah M. Beadel, Kerry A. Ford, Ilse Breitwieser, Ines Schönberger, Rowan Hindmarsh-Walls, Peter B. Heenan and Kate Ladley. Please note, threat classifications are often suggested by authors when publications fall between NZTCS assessment periods – a suggested threat classification status has not been assessed by the NZTCS panel.
2017 | Not Threatened
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | Not Threatened
2009 | Not Threatened
2004 | Not Threatened
Tall soft-wooded grey-trunked tree bearing masses of narrow sharply-toothed leaves and small clusters of white flowers that develop into dry papery winged fruits. Leaves 20-48mm long by 5-10mm wide (juvenile leaves much shorter and rounder). Flowers in groups of 1-8, on stalks 10-12mm long.
Endemic. New Zealand: North and South Islands - mostly easterly from the Wairoa River Northland south to Southland. In the North Island scarce north of the Hawkes Bay, absent from Taranaki, Bay of Plenty and Auckland areas and from most of the Waikato. In the South Island absent from Westland and Fiordland.
A common mostly lowland forest species frequenting alluvial forest where it may at times be dominant. Hoheria angustifolia is often an important host for taapia (Tupeia antarctica).
Wetland plant indicator status rating
Information derived from the revised national wetland plant list prepared to assist councils in delineating and monitoring wetlands (Clarkson et al., 2021 Manaaki Whenua – Landcare Research Contract Report LC3975 for Hawke’s Bay Regional Council). The national plant list categorises plants by the extent to which they are found in wetlands and not ‘drylands’. The indicator status ratings are OBL (obligate wetland), FACW (facultative wetland), FAC (facultative), FACU (facultative upland), and UPL (obligate upland).
FACU: Facultative Upland
Occasionally is a hydrophyte but usually occurs in uplands (non-wetlands).
Slender heteroblastic tree up to 18 m tall. Mature branches and branchlets ± glabrous; young branches and branchlets finely and densely covered in stellate-pubescence. Juvenile and sub-adults filiramulate-divaricate, branchlets slender, pliant, ± interlacing. Leaves distant, fascicled, on very slender petioles, 1.0-2.3 mm long; lamina (2.0-)4.0(-8.4) × 4.0-7.5 mm, grey-green to dark green, broad-obovate to suborbicular, cuneately narrowed to base, dentate along upper margin. Adult leaves, less widely spaced, fascicled. petioles 4.8-5.3 mm long; lamina (including teeth) 20-48 × 5-10 mm; narrow, obovate, oblanceolate, oblong, lanceolate, apex obtuse to acute; margins coarsely spinulose dentate-serrate; teeth up to 4 mm long. The different leaf-forms may all occur on the same plant, often as reversion shoots on damaged mature trees. Flowers solitary or in 2-8-flowered cymose fascicles on very slender stellate-pubescent pedicels 10-12 mm long. Calyx densely pubescent, campanulate, 3.0-4.2 mm long, (3-)5-fid; teeth broad-triangular. Petals (5-)7(-9) mm long, white, obliquely narrow-oblong, notched. Stigma capitate. Anthers reniform. Carpels and styles 5. Mericarp semicircular, winged, main body 2.5-3.5 mm long, pale brown; wing 3.0-6.0 mm long, light-orange yellow, densely covered with stellate hairs near base. Description adapted from Allan (1961) and Webb & Simpson (2011).
Easily distinguished from all other Hoheria species by the heteroblastic growth habit in which the filiramulate-divaricating juvenile form is long persistent, being usually seen as reversion shoots on mature trees. The mature leaves of Hoheria angustifolia are also much narrowed and more deeply toothed than any other species. However, where the ranges of Hoheria angustifolia and H. sexstylosa overlap hybrids between both species are common (these have even been formally named as H. populnea var. lanceolata - a “variety” many New Zealand botanists seem to think equates with H. sexstylosa one of its parents! Another expression of this hybrid found occasionally in the Tararua Ranges, Eastern Wairarapa, South Wellington Coastline and in parts of the Marlborough Sounds has even been referred to as a “new species” Hoheria “Tararua”. These hybrids can be recognised by their shorter, broader canopy and variable leaf dimensions which are intermediate between both parents - unfortunately introgressive hybrid swarms are frequent, and at times the hybrid dominates where one or more parents have been eliminated. Detailed research into these hybrid swarms using modern molecular methods is sorely needed to determine the extent of gene-flow as well as to characterize the nature of this hybridism.
December - February
February - April
Winged mericarps are dispersed by wind (Thorsen et al., 2009).
Easy from fresh seed. Very fast growing and the diversity of foliage types exhibited by juvenile and adults can be very attractive. Due to its large size it is best for a big garden
Not Threatened - though the northern North Island populations are small and few are on protected land
hoheria: Latin version of the Maori name houhere which refers to H. populnea and H. glabrata.
angustifolia: From the Latin angustus ‘narrow, constricted’ and folius ‘leaf’, meaning narrow-leaved
Where To Buy
Occasionally sold by garden centres and commonly available from specialist native plant nurseries
Fact Sheet Prepared for NZPCN by: P.J. de Lange 3 April 2011. Description adapted from Allan (1961) and Webb & Simpson (2011).
References and further reading
Allan, H.H. 1961: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. I, Wellington, Government Printer.
Webb, C.J.; Simpson, M.J.A. 2001: Seeds of New Zealand Gymnosperms and Dicotyledons. Christchurch, Manuka Press.
Moorfield, J. C. (2005). Te aka : Maori-English, English-Maori dictionary and index. Pearson Longman: Auckland, N.Z.
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
NZPCN Fact Sheet citation
Please cite as: de Lange, P.J. (Year at time of access): Hoheria angustifolia Fact Sheet (content continuously updated). New Zealand Plant Conservation Network. https://www.nzpcn.org.nz/flora/species/hoheria-angustifolia/ (Date website was queried)