One of the oddities in New Zealand’s forest is horoeka – the lancewood (Pseudopanax crassifolius). Beginning life as a single-stemmed plant with one-metre-long stiff, drooping leaves, it changes when its growing tip is about three metres above the ground. The plant begins to branch and develops short (20 centimetre), upright leaves. The adult tree grows to about 15 metres tall and supports a many-branched, rounded crown of short, leathery leaves.
Click to see different stages of lancewood's growth.
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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Maggy Wassilieff
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