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NZ Plants

Dactylanthus taylori - pua o te reinga, wood rose, flower of hades

Family: Balanophoraceae

Dactylanthus taylori is a small root parasite lacking chlorophyll.  Stems (rhizomes) are partly or wholly subterranean with a broad woody and convoluted attachment (the ‘rose’) to the host root. Leaves are small, brownish and only found on flowering shoots. This plant is only briefly seen when the flowering shoots rise a short distance above the forest floor.
An endemic genus with one species found as small and isolated populations on the North Island and the northern portion of the South Island.

Vegetative characteristics

Reproductive characteristics

Plant form: perennial, underground stems

Arrangement of parts: asymmetric

Leaf form: undivided, broadly triangular

Tepals (sepals indistinguishable from petals): 0-4 in male; 2 in female flower

Leaf size: 5-20 mm


Leaf arrangement: singly along stem

Sexuality: unisexual on different plants

Leaf attachment:

Stamens: 1

Leaf margin:

Ovary: above petals

Leaf surface:

Fruit: dry