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


Metrosideros excelsa 'Aurea' (Yellow Pohutukawa)

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids 
Order: Myrtales 
Family: Myrtaceae 
Genus: Metrosideros 
Species: M. excelsa 
Scientific name: Metrosideros excelsa 'Aurea'
Common name: Yellow Puhutukawa.

The Yellow Pohutukawa (Metrosideros excelsa 'Aurea') is a rare colour form. It is a coastal evergreen tree in the myrtle family, Myrtaceae, that produces a brilliant display of yellow flowers made up of a mass of stamens. This yellow-flowered form "Aurea" descends from a pair discovered in 1840 on Motiti Island of Tauranga in the Bay of Plenty by a Mr Potts. This coastal  tree can reach 20m in height.

Below is part of an article in the New Zealand Garden Journal, 2010, Vol. 13(1)
“M. excelsa ‘Aurea’: a greenish yellow-flowered variant that originatedon Motiti Island in the Bay of Plenty. It was first offered for sale in a 1947 Duncan & Davies Nursery Catalogue (no. 97). For many years Duncan& Davies produced it from seed only and all seedlings remained relatively true to type with yellow flowers (Hobbs, 1992). Green (1975) incorrectly assumed that it was grown from cuttings to maintain its flower colour. Metcalf (1987, 2000) states that all cultivated material is derived from two trees discovered on Motiti Island about 1940. Simpson (2005) states that naturally occurring yellow-flowered variants are relatively common on Motiti Island.”
This yellow species of Pohutukawa is a taonga to the Maori, a valued treasure.



Yellow Puhutukawa. and red Puhutokawa growing together near the junction of Wallath Rd and Tukapa St..

Can be seen at Spencer place entrance.  This tree flowers in January later than the trees on the coast.
 

Growing at  the junction of Wallath Rd and Tukapa St. (Mid December)


Flower buds mid November.