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


Myrsine divaricata (Weeping matipo)

Kingdom: Plantae
(Unranked): Angiosperms
(Unranked): Eudicots
(Unranked): Asterids 
Order: Ericales 
Family: Myrsinaceae 
Genus: Myrsine 
Species: M.  divaricata  
Binomial name: Myrsine divaricata  
Common Names:
Weeping matipo, Weeping mapou

Myrsine divaricata is a small evergreen, bushy shrub, with spreading, drooping branches, which can grow to 7m high and have a trunk up to 40cm in diameter. The drooping branches give rise to woody interlacing (divaricating) branchlets bearing solitary leaves or leaves in groups (fascicles).
The small leathery leaves are 7–12 mm long broad, heart shaped and are strongly notched at the tip and have with thickened margins. Solitary leaves are arranged alternately along the stem. The leaves in fascicles are attached to short side branches, with thickened margins. Oil glands appear as dots scattered within the leaf blade but especially prominent at the margins. A distinguishing feature is a dark blotch at the base of each leaf.
Tiny flowers, with pale yellow or red petals, occur singly or in clusters.
Small 4-5 mm in diameter fleshy fruits (drupes) is formed.
Myrsine divaricata  is endemic in lowland to higher montane forests and shrublands, in North Island (from latitude 35° southwards), South Island, Stewart Island, Auckland Island, and Campbell Island. It is present on Mt Egmont/Taranaki at an altitude where the shrubs become smaller and more compact.

A Myrsine divaricata growing in Kura Tawhiti/Castle Hill Conservation area, WNW of Christchurch.


A tree growing in Christchurch's Botanical Gardens.






A drooping branch of a mature tree.


The leaf of an adult shrub. A distinguishing feature is a dark blotch at the base of each leaf.


Top surface of the leaves


The underside of the leaves.  Oil glands appear as dots scattered within the leaf blade but especially prominent at the margins.  
 

Stem of young plant
  

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