Pseudopanax: false cure
crassifolius: From the Latin crassus' thick and folius 'leaf'
Pseudopanax crassifolius (Sol. ex A.Cunn.) C.Koch
Small tree with distinctive draped thick long narrow toothed juvenile leaves
Vascular - Native
Aralia crassifolia Sol. ex A.Cunn., Panax crassifolium (Sol.) Decne et Planchon, Panax longissimum Hook.f., Panax coriaceum Regel, Hedera crassifolia Gray
Endemic. North, South and Stewart Islands. Widespread and common
Lowland to montane forest. Sealevel to c. 750 m a.s.l.
Bushy topped tree to 15 m tall, branchlets fleshy, trunk us. unbranched in lower part, to 50 cm diam., distinctly ridged when young, bark dark becoming paler with age, wood tough. Leaves alternate; leaflets 1-3 in seedling, palmate, sessile or subsessile on very short petiolule, submembranous coarsely toothed, absent from juvenile and adult. Juvenile leaves dark green, narrow-linear, deflexed, to 1 m long, coriaceous, midrib pale cream-yellow, raised, margins distantly sharply toothed, distal margin of tooth perpendicular to midvein, not swollen. Adult leaves shorter, 10-20 x 2-3 cm, dark green, very occ. trifoliate (probably due to hybridisation with oither species), narrow elliptic-cuneate to lanceolate or linear-obovate, acute or obtuse, margins entire to sunuate or coarsely serrate, subsessile or on petioles to 10 mm long, petiole base expanded around stem. Inflorescence a terminal umbel, irregularly compound; primary rays (branchlets) 5-10, c. 6 cm long; umbellules sometimes racemosely arranged. Ovary 5-loculed, each containing 1 ovule; style branches 5, connate, tips sometimes free. Fruit fleshy, subglobose, 4-5 mm diam., style branches retained on an apical disc, dark purple when ripe. Seeds 4-5 per fruit, easily separated, broadly ovate, grooved, 2.2-3.5(-5.5) mm long.
Usually only confused with the rarer Pseudopanax ferox which has rounded discoloured teeth on the juvenile leaves, and darker brown adult leaves. Pseudopanax ferox also has a larger fruit.
2n = 48
Where To Buy
Can be purchased from Oratia Native Plant Nurseries (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Description adapted from Allan, H.H. 1961. Flora of NZ, Vol. I. Government Printer, Wellington and Webb, C.J. & Simpson, M.J.A. 2001. Seeds of NZ gymnosperms and dicotyledons. Manuka Press, Christchurch.
This page last updated on 15 May 2013