Kōrero: Shrublands

Matagouri spines

Matagouri spines

Matagouri or wild Irishman (Discaria toumatou) is the only native plant with thorns. A drought-tolerant divaricating shrub, it is widespread in the eastern South Island and Central Otago. Matagouri is uncommon in the North Island, growing in only a few coastal sites. For much of the year it has few leaves, and its stems and thorns carry out photosynthesis. A flush of new leaves is produced during wet periods. Matagouri forms open shrubland on dry infertile soils, but can become dense scrubland up to 5 metres tall on superphosphate-fertilised land. Many South Island hill-country farmers consider it a weed, and regularly burn or spray it.

Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi

Private collection
Photograph by Maggy Wassilieff

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.

Ngā whakaahua me ngā rauemi katoa o tēnei kōrero

Te tuhi tohutoro mō tēnei whārangi:

Maggy Wassilieff, 'Shrublands - Shrublands of dry country', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/mi/photograph/14537/matagouri-spines (accessed 18 June 2024)

He kōrero nā Maggy Wassilieff, i tāngia i te 24 Sep 2007