T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Aciphylla ferox (Fierce Speargrass)

Kingdom: Plantae
(Unranked): Angiosperms
(Unranked): Eudicots
(Unranked): Asterids
Order: Apiales
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Aciphylla
Species: A. ferox
Scientific name: Aciphylla ferox
Common name: Fierce Speargrass, Taramea, Fierce Spaniard

Aciphylla ferox is a hardy evergreen soft-wooded perennial with grey-green spiny leaves and reaches a height of 1m with fan shaped stiff pungent leaves up to 40cm long, with two to four leaflets per leaf. In early summer to late summer it develops 75cm flower stems which are stout and grooved with yellow flower heads. It is found throughout the mountains of Nelson and Marlborough in tussock lands and herbfields.

Photographed at Otari-Wilton's Bush Reserve.