Hoheria sexstylosa ( Ribbonwood) Houhere
Species: H. sexstylosa
Binomial name: Hoheria sexstylosa
Synonyms: H. lanceolata. H. populnea lanceolata.
Common names: Houhere, Houhiongaonga, Long-leaved Lacebark, Long Leaved Houhere, Graceful lacebark, Ribbonwood.
Hoheria sexstylosa is a species endemic to New Zealand. It is a fast growing evergreen tree growing to 8 tall by 6 m broad. It has steeply ascending stems and branches. The smaller branches become drooping or even pendulous as the tree matures give the tree a graceful weeping habit. It has deeply incised, serrated evergreen leaves which are 3-15 cm long and 2-5 cm wide. The foliage is very variable on young plants, being ovate or rounded and variously lobed or toothed. Adult leaves are alternate, lanceolate, acuminate, glabrous, dentate, light glossy green above and paler on the undersides.
In late summer and autumn it develops white scented, star-shaped flowers which are up to 2.5cm across and displayed in 2-5 flowered cymes in the leaf axils. The flowers have 6 pinkish styles hence its Latin name “sexstylosa” which means "six styles". The developed fruit has wings which are coloured red to pink appear about May.
Distribution in the North Island is from Waikato and the Coromandel Peninsula south to Wellington, while in the South Island natural populations appear to be in North West Nelson, inland Marlborough and Banks Peninsula. There may be other populations that are naturalised.
The bark was traditionally used by the Maori and early European settlers in New Zealand to make rope and its white timber was used in cabinet-making.
Surface of a leaf.
The underside of a leaf.