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


Coprosma chathamica (Chatham Island karamu)

Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Rubiaceae
Subfamily: Rubioideae
Tribe: Anthospermeae
Genus: Coprosma
Species: C. chathamica
Binomial name: Coprosma chathamica
Common names: Chatham Island karamu, Karamu

Coprosma chathamica is a fast growing canopy tree reaching a height of 15 m in it natural habitat. It is endemic to the Chatham Islands where it grows in scattered, moist, self draining sites in the coastal and inland forest areas. 
The fleshy, glossy, dark green adult leaves are >4 cm long and are in pairs. They have faint veins which have a small pit at some of their junctions with the main rib.
Young trees have very large juvenile leaves >12cm long and they usually have distinctly hairy margins. Both female and male flowers are produced during early summer. These are followed by 9mm, yellowish red drupes.

A young shrub photographed at 
Southern Woods Plant Nursery, Templeton, Christchurch.