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

Scutellaria novae-zelandiae

Kingdom: Plantae
(Unranked): Angiosperms
(Unranked): Eudicots
(Unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae
Subfamily: Scutellarioideae
Genus: Scutellaria
Species: S. novae-zelandiae|
Binomial name: Scutellaria novae-zelandiae
Synonym: Scutellaria humilis

Scutellaria novae-zelandiae is one of two members of the mint family native to New Zealand. It is a rare soft woody herb with erect branches up to 30 cm tall with creeping stems that root at the nodes in the surface topsoil.
The main stems woody at base, creeping, square in cross-section, dark purple-red, maroon to almost black
It has small, dark green, oval leaves which are typically 4–5 mm long and 2–4 mm across. The softly hairy white flowers are up to 5 mm across and appear August to March (sporadic flowering may occur throughout the year).

It is endemic to the lowland forests in Nelson and Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand. It was listed among the rare and endangered plants of New Zealand by Given (1981) because of the very few collections and absence of information on its ecology and has received a rating of 'Endangered' according to the IUCN classification (Wilson and Given, 1989).

Scutellaria was first recorded from Nelson in 1840 and has been found only at scattered lowland sites since then, from Golden Bay to the Awatere Valley in Marlborough. Most of these sites occur in the Golden Bay and Arthur Ecological Districts (McEwen, 1987) of the North-West Nelson Ecological Region, the Moutere and Bryant Districts of the Nelson Region, and the Pelorus District of the Richmond Region. Many of these populations had not been relocated since the 1950s, and until recently Scutellaria was known from only one location near Takaka and several sites in the Maitai and Roding valleys near Nelson (Wilson and Given, 1989). There have been no studies of Scutellaria, although it has been grown in nurseries for a number of years. 
Acknowledgements P. A. Williams, published in the New Zealand Journal of Ecology, Vol 16, No2, 1992.

For more details visit :http://www.nzpcn.org.nz/flora_details.aspx?ID=118

Photographed at Otari Native Botanic Garden and Wilton's Bush Reserve. Wellington.
Note the stems are square in cross-section, dark purple-red, maroon to almost back.in colour.

Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: