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


Juncus kraussii (Wiwi)

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Juncaceae
Genus: Juncus
Species: J. kraussii
Binomial name: Juncus kraussii
Syn: Juncus maritimus australiensis.
Common names: Wiwi, knobby clubrush, sea rush, ethel sedge

Wiwi the name for several species of native plants which grow in stiff, rush-like clumps with tall, shiny, unjointed, wire-like stems with a brownish, tiny, ball-like cluster of seeds near the top of the stem. They are found mostly coastal but occasional extending into montane areas (up to 700 m ) and In a wide range of habitats but favouring open situations.  It is commonly on sandy areas, especially on sand dunes, sandy beaches and at the back of estuaries. It sometimes colonising sandstone, limestone of volcanic rock outcrops in lowland forest in moist areas.
The flowers are brown and appear September - December and the fruit appear November - May

The early Maori use to pick the tall stems, place them on the top of a hungi where the heat strengthened them. They used to hang food on to dry. (Pipis, Fish, etc.).  They used Wiwi because it did not flavour the food.

 

The brownish, tiny, ball-like cluster of seeds near the top of the stem.

Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/