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NZ Plants

Phyllocladus trichomanoides - tanekaha

Celery pine family: Phyllocladaceae

Phyllocladus trichomanoides is a pyramidal forest tree with slender spreading branches arising in whorls. Seedling plants have narrow, flattened needle-like leaves. Mature plants have flattened photosynthetic stems (phylloclades) arranged in distinct whorls. Each phylloclade has two rows of linear, often pointed, segments which are not as leathery or as wide as those of P. toatoa.  Minute scale-like leaves are formed on segment margins. Small, fleshy ovule cones are formed.
An endemic species found in lowland forest on both North and South Islands.

Vegetative characteristics

Reproductive characteristics

Adult plant form: tree up to 30 m

Pollen and ovule cones: on the same or different trees

Phylloclade form: broad to linear and pointed

Pollen cone: in whorls at tips of stems; up to 100 mm long, 80-100 fertile scales

Phylloclade size: 20-40 mm long x 10-20 mm wide

Ovule cone: globular, 3-5 mm with 8-12  fertile scales/bracts

Phylloclade margin: toothed to deeply incised

Ovule cone position: at margins of phylloclades, or replacing a phylloclade

Phylloclade arrangement: arranged on either side of whorled stems (rhachides)

Ovule coverings: a single covering (integument)

Stem arrangement: in whorls of 3-5  

Ovule pore: directed upward

Adult leaves (denticles): scale-like, 1-2.5 mm, on margin of phylloclade segment

Mature seed cone: each seed develops a white flesh (aril) at the base and becomes enclosed by enlarged sterile bracts that turn reddish or purplish

Juvenile leaves: singly on stem, narrow-linear (needle-like) up to 15 mm, deciduous

Stem (receptacle) below seed: stalk not fleshy