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Knightia excelsa

New Zealand honeysuckle

An evergreen tree with a narrowly conical habit, up to 30m high in its native environment but usually only 8-10m in cultivation. Young shoots are covered with red-brown felt, and young leaves are narrow and yellow-green, with coarsely serrated edges. Mature leaves are dark green, stiff and oblong-shaped. Dense spikes of small reddish flowers, with rolled petals and long styles, are produced from late spring to early summer, followed by woody brown seed pods

Other common names
New Zealand oak
rewa-rewa
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Size
Ultimate height
8–12 metres
Time to ultimate height
20–50 years
Ultimate spread
Wider than 8 metres
Growing conditions
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Red Green
Summer Red Green
Autumn Green
Winter Green
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H1C
Botanical details
Family
Proteaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Evergreen
Habit
Columnar upright
Genus

A genus of evergreen trees native to New Zealand with leathery, toothed leaves and long, bright red flowers. Commonly known as 'Rewarewa', a Māori term, the flowers are a source of honey production

Name status

Correct

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in fertile, well-drained, neutral to acid soil in full sun or light shade with shelter from cold winds. Some drought tolerance once established; will not tolerate waterlogging. Needs frost protection when young. A striking specimen tree for warmer regions

Propagation

Propagate by seed or by semi-ripe cuttings in summer; cuttings require bottom heat and may be slow to root

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Architectural
Pruning

Minimal pruning required, see pruning group 1

Pests

May be susceptible to thrips

Diseases

Generally disease-free

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