Vascular – Exotic
Trees & Shrubs - Dicotyledons
Terrestrial. Thrives in low shrubland and fernland on peaty soils on the Chathams.
Aromatic bushy shrub, 1-2 m high, often suckering profusely. Shoots often reddish when young, later deep brown, densely clothed in short hairs at first. Small ovate leaves shining green with reddish margins. Small pale pink flowers hang down singly or in small clusters. The globular fruit are obviously stalked and reach 14 mm diameter, becoming dark purplish red when ripe, the flesh is white and sweet.
Manaaki Whenua Online Interactive Key
Could be confused with native shrubs, especially those in the Myrtaceae (e.g. Neomyrtus and Lophomyrtus). Pendant flowers and fruit are distinctive.
November, December, January, February, March, April.
Reproduces from fruit. Many seeds contained in each fruit. Viability unknown. Bird dispersed fruits
Reason for introduction
Tolerates wet soils with high acidity, tolerant of cold temps and frosts, re-sprouts after damage (incl fire).
This taxon is confimed to be prone to Myrtle Rust (Austropuccinia psidii), an invasive fungus which threatens native myrtle species. Learn more myrtlerust.org.nz