Story: Shrubs and small trees of the forest

Māhoe in berry

Māhoe in berry

Māhoe (Melicytus ramiflorus), a member of the violet family, is a common tree of coastal and lowland forest, and regenerating shrublands. It is also known as whiteywood, a reference to its pale bark. The leaves are bright green and coarsely toothed. The lacy leaf skeletons are common on the forest floor. Māhoe has separate male and female trees. Flowering is in late spring and summer, and berries ripen during late summer and autumn. Each berry contains six to seven seeds. Native birds such as pigeons and waxeyes spread the seeds after feeding on the fleshy berries.

Using this item

Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Alastair McLean

This item has been provided for private study purposes (such as school projects, family and local history research) and any published reproduction (print or electronic) may infringe copyright law. It is the responsibility of the user of any material to obtain clearance from the copyright holder.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Joanna Orwin, 'Shrubs and small trees of the forest - Lookalike subcanopy trees', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 6 February 2023)

Story by Joanna Orwin, published 24 Sep 2007, updated 1 Jul 2015