Juvenile (left) and adult (right) toothed lancewoods have very different forms. Many other native plant species have similar variations, where the mature plants branch out sideways once they are 2–3 metres high. In other plants, the juvenile is a divaricating shrub, but when it grows around 3 metres above the ground its leaves become much larger. Different juvenile and adult forms may have been adaptations to browsing moa, or to the cold.
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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Melanie Lovell-Smith
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