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NZ Plants

Alectryon excelsus - tītoki

Family: Sapindaceae

Alectryon excelsus subsp. excelsus  is a stout many-branched tree with smooth brown bark. It has leaves consisting of 3-7 pairs of very glossy leaflets with obscurely toothed margins. The tiny flowers give rise to a fruit which splits to reveal a large seed partly covered by bright red flesh (the aril). A genus of more than 40 species found across Australasia, Micronesia and Southeast Asia. The Sapindaceae is a moderate sized mostly tropical family with two genera in New Zealand.
An endemic found on the North Island south to the middle of the South Island.

Vegetative characteristics

Reproductive characteristics

Plant form: tree up to 17 m

Flower symmetry: symmetric


Flower size:2-3 mm diam.

Leaf form: of 4-6 pairs of ovate-lanceolate leaflets  

Sepals: 5, red

Leaf size: leaflets 50-100 x 20-50  mm

Petals: 0

Leaf arrangement: alternate

Sexuality: unisexual on different plants; bisexual

Leaf attachment:

Stamens: 6-8, red

Leaf margin: smooth; juvenile toothed

Ovary: above petals

Leaf surface: may be uneven, blistered; hairs sparse

Fruit: dry