Centrolepis pallida


Centrolepis: pointed scale
pallida: From the Latin pallidus 'pale or pallid'

Common Name(s)


Current Conservation Status

2012 - Not Threatened

Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2012 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2009 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, Paul D. Champion, Shannel P. Courtney, Peter B. Heenan, John W. Barkla, Ewen K. Cameron, David A. Norton and Rodney A. Hitchmough. File size: 792KB

Previous Conservation Status

2009 - Not Threatened
2004 - Not Threatened


Centrolepis pallida (Hook.f.) Cheeseman



Flora Category

Vascular - Native

NVS Species Code


The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.

Structural Class

Monocotyledonous Herbs


Gaimardia pallida Hook.f.; Alepyrum pallidum (Hook.f.) Hook.f.; Pseudalepyrum pallidum (Hook.f.) Dandy


Endemic. New Zealand: North (Central Volcanic Plateau, and Ruahine Range), South (Otago, Southland and Fiordland), Auckland and Campbell Islands


Montane to alpine in bogs descending to near sea level in the subantarctic islands.


Dense, pale or bright green, moss-like cushions. Roots comparatively thick, but < 0.5 mm diameter Stems 15–40 mm long. Leaves 6–9 mm long, < 0.5 mm. wide, distichous, equitant at the base, closely imbricate up the stem, lamina stiff, erect, glabrous, subulate, laterally compressed or occasionally channelled, narrowed to an acute or occasionally shortly acicular tip; leaf-sheaths c.½ length of lamina, very pale cream, membranous, without ligule or auricles. Flowering stems about equal leaves in length. Floral bracts 2, ± opposite, unequal in length, the lower larger. Pseudanthia, 1 in each floral bract, or 1 bract without pseudanthium; male 1 only, in the lowermost pseudanthium, at maturity the filament elongated excessively and the anther far exserted; female 1–3(-4) in each pseudanthium; hyaline scales 0. Seed ± 0.5 mm long, oblong-obovate, apiculate at one end. Micron test: µ

Similar Taxa

Recognised by the pale or bright green, moss-like, cushion forming, perennial rather than annual growth habit and pale or bright green, densely imbricating glabrous leaves.


December – January


January - March

Propagation Technique

Difficult. Should not be removed from the wild.


Not Threatened

Endemic Taxon


Endemic Genus


Endemic Family


Life Cycle and Dispersal

Seeds are wind dispersed (Thorsen et al., 2009).

Where To Buy

Not commercially available.


Fact sheet prepared for NZPCN by P.J. de Lange 14 August 2006. Description adapted from Moore & Edgar (1970)

References and further reading

Moore, L.B.; Edgar, E. 1970: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. II. Government Printer, Wellington.

Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285-309

This page last updated on 2 Jun 2014