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


Griselinia lucida (Shining broadleaf,Akapuka)

Kingdom: Plantae
(Unranked): Angiosperms
(Unranked): Eudicots
(Unranked): Asterids
Order: Apiales
Family: Griseliniaceae
Genus: Griselinia
Species: Griselinia lucida
Common names: Akapuka, Shining broadleaf

Griselinia lucida can be epiphytic or hemiepiphytic. The young tree often colonizes amongst other epiphytes like Collospermum (Perching lily) and Astelia (native bush lily) high in the forest canopy, before growing aerial roots down the trunk of its host. Upon contact with the ground the roots can become large up to 250 mm thick, and are easily identified for their heavy lengthwise corrugations.
G. lucida seldom becomes a freestanding tree if having begun life epiphytically, and can often be seen to have collapsed where the host has died.
The leaves are 12–18 cm long. The tiny flowers are unisexual with fragrant male and female flowers on different plants. The fruit starts off as little green berries and then turns black when the seeds are ripe, but the birds usually get them before that happens.
Griselinia lucida is found in forest and coastal regions throughout New Zealand though it grows naturally as an epiphyte in the forest but it will also grow well as a shrub in cultivation. On Rangitoto Island Griselinia lucida are growing naturally in the open, between the scoria and not as epiphytes.

Photo below: Griselinia lucida vine on Tawa tree. See rata vine on right side bottom of trunk. Griselinia lucida usually starts in a nest of epiphytes or in a branch fork. After a while it will send a root to the ground. When developed it has distinctive longitudinal ridges.

This is the same vine as above photo with the fallen host tree which collapsed after strong winds January 2011. This old Tawa had an epiphytic Grisellinia crown, a very a old Rata vine, Perching lilies and a Pukatea are growing on it.


An old Tawa tree covered with epiphytic plants,  Griselinia lucida, rata vine and a perching lily.
By clicking on the image below and loading a larger photo three species of epiphytes can be seen 





Griselinia lucida buds and flowers.

The flower of Griselinia lucida


A young leaf


A Griselinia lucida adult leaf

The underside of a leaf.