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Rangiora

Thick papery leaves with furry undersides make rangiora the ‘bushman’s friend’.

Rangiora
Brachyglottis repanda
Can grow as high as
7m
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More about this tree

  • Rangiora is commonly found in scrub and lowland forest throughout the North Island and upper South Island. 
  • Its giant papery leaves with furry undersides mean it's known as bushman’s toilet paper.
  • The leaves are said to have an antiseptic quality and were used to cover sores and wounds, though they are toxic if chewed or swallowed by humans and cause ‘staggers’ in stock.
  • Newly growing rangiora shoots are covered in a brown felt-like velvet, but it is said this is where the poison is most concentrated. 
  • The tree has masses of tiny, fragrant creamy yellow flowers in spring, and then when dried, the seed disperses by wind.
  • The lighter coloured undersides of rangiora leaves made good track markers.
  • The name rangiora translates as ‘rangi’ (sky) and ‘ora’ (health or vitality), and this plant is a symbol of health and vitality for Māori.
  • The Brachyglottis genus belongs to the daisy family, which includes dandelions, daisies and sunflowers.
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