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Manual of the New Zealand Flora.

Order XLII. Ericaceæ

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Order XLII. Ericaceæ.

Shrubs or small trees, sometimes low and creeping. Leaves usually alternate, sometimes opposite or whorled, rigid, simple, entire "or serrate; stipules wanting. Flowers regular, hermaphrodite. Calyx inferior, 4–5-toothed or -cleft. Corolla gamopetalous, hvpogynous, regular, often campanulate or urceolate, 4–5-toothed or -lobed (in some exotic genera divided into 4–5 free petals). Stamens usually double the number of the corolla-lobes, rarely the same number, hypogynous or sometimes adnate to the base of the corolla; filaments free; anthers 2-celled, opening by terminal pores or slits, often furnished with appendages. Ovary superior, 4–5-celled; style simple, terminal; stigma capitate, entire or shortly lobed; ovules usually many, attached to the inner angle of the cell or pendulous from the top of the angle. Fruit a capsule or berry, sometimes enclosed in the enlarged and succulent calyx (Gaultheria). Seeds usually numerous, small; albumen fleshy; embryo straight, axile.

A large order, widely spread over the whole world, especially in temperate and cool regions, but singularly rare in Australia and New Zealand, where its place is taken by the allied family Epacrideœ. In the tropics it is principally found on high mountains. Genera between 50 and 60; species not far from 1200. The properties of the order are unimportant, but it contains some of the most beautiful shrubs cultivated in gardens, as the various kinds of Rhododendron, Azalea, Erica, Arbutus, &c. Of the two genera found in New Zealand, Gaultheria has a wide range in Asia and America, and is also found in Australia; Pernettya is principally South American, but occurs in Tasmania as well.

Fruit dry, capsular, usually enclosed in the enlarged and succulent calyx 1. Gaultheria.
Fruit a berry, calyx persistent at its base, but not fleshy nor enlarged 2. Pernettya.

Gaultheria, Kahn.

Erect or procumbent shrubs, often hispid or strigose. Leaves persistent, alternate, usually serrate or serrulate, coriaceous. Flowers small, racemose or axillary and solitary. Calyx 5-lobed or -partite, in fruit usually enlarged and more or less succulent and coloured. Corolla urceolate or campanulate, 5-lobed; lobes imbricate, spreading or recurved. Stamens 10, included within the corolla-tube; filaments more or less dilated; anthers 2-celled, each cell opening by a terminal or oblique pore and tipped with 2 erect awns. Ovary 5-celled, with several ovules in each cell; style cylindric; stigma simple. Capsule 5-celled, loculicidally 5-valved, included in the usually enlarged and succulent calyx. Seeds numerous, minute, subglobose or obtusely angled.

A genus of nearly 100 species, mainly American, stretching from Oregon to Cape Horn, a few found in Australia and New Zealand, some in India and the Malay Archipelago, and one in Japan. In the New Zealand species the calyx is sometimes enlarged and succulent and sometimes dry and unaltered when the page 405 fruit is ripe, and occasionally the capsule may be slightly succulent, thus breaking down the distinction between Pernettya and Gaultheria. One of the species extends to Tasmania, the remainder are endemic.

* Leaves alternate. Flowers axillary, the tips of the branches sometimes forming leafy racemes

Stems erect or prostrate. Leaves very variable, orbicular to linear-oblong 1. G. antipoda.
Stems slender, flexuous, often intertwined. Leaves linear-lanceolate 2. G. perplexa.

** Leaves alternate. Flowers in axillary and terminal racemes.

Leaves oblong-lanceolate to broad-oblong 3. G. rupestris.
Leaves ovate oblong, cordate at the base 4. G. fagi folia.

*** Leaves opposite. Flowers in axillary and terminal often compound racemes.

Leaves ovate or ovate-oblong, cordate at the base, sessile. 5. G. oppositifolia.
1.G. antipoda, Forst. Prodr. n. 196.—An erect or prostrate much or sparingly branched rigid shrub, very variable in size and habit, on the mountains frequently only a few inches high, in lowland situations 2–4 ft. or more. Branches stout, sometimes glabrous, but usually more or less clothed with blackish or yellow-brown bristles intermixed with a short and fine white pubescence. Leaves alternate, shortly petiolate, variable in size, in large-leaved forms ⅓–⅔ in., in dwarfed mountain statesin., ⅙–⅓ in. orbicular or broadly oblong to oblong-lanceolate or linear-lanceolate, obtuse or acute, bluntly serrate, very thick and coriaceous, conspicuously veined, glabrous except the petioles, which are hispid-pubescent. Flowers small, white or red, axillary and solitary, often crowded at the ends of the branches, which thus form leafy racemes; peduncles short, curved, bracteolate, pubescent. Calyx 5- or rarely 6-iobed; lobes ovate-oblong, acute. Corolla 1/10 -⅛ in. long. Capsule usually included in the enlarged and succulent calyx-lobes, forming a red or white globose berry-like fruit ½ in. diam., but frequently the lobes remain dry and unaltered.—A. Rich. Fl. Nouv. Zel. 211, t. 28; A. Cunn. Precur. n. 417; Raoul, Choix, 44; Hook, f. Fl. Nov. Zel. i. 161; Handb. N.Z. Fl. 174.

Var. erecta.—Erect, much branched. Leaves large, ½–¾ in., broadly oblong or orbicular.—G. epiphyta, Col. in Trans. N.Z. Inst. xxii. (1890) 474.

Var. fluviatilis, Hook. f. Fl. Nov. Zel. i. 161.—Erect, virgately branched. Leaves large, ⅓–⅔ in., oblong-lanceolate or lanceolate. Flowers small, almost racemed, on longer and more slender pedicels.—G. fluviatilis, A. Cunn. Precur. n. 419.

Var. depressa, Hook. f. l.c.—Depressed or prostrate; branches creeping and rooting at the base, clothed with fulvous bristles. Leaves ¼–½ in., orbicular to elliptical or oblong. Flowers axillary. Berry large, ½–⅔ in. diam.—Fl. Tasm. i. 241, t. 73A, G. depressa, Hook.f. in Lond. Journ. Bot. vi. (1847) 267.

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Var. microphylla, Hook, f. l.c.—Small, prostrate, sparingly branched. Leaves ⅙–¼ in. long, ovate to linear-lanceolate.—Pernettya macrostigrma, Col. in Trans. N.Z. Inst. xxi. (1889) 92.

North and South Islands, Stewart Island: The first two varieties abundant throughout, the second two in mountain districts from the East Cape southwards. Sea-level to 6000 ft.

A variable plant in most of its characters, particularly in the fruiting calyx, which may be greatly enlarged, highly coloured, and succulent, or may remain dry and unaltered. Both succulent and dry calyces may be found on the same branch. The variety depressa is also found on the Tasmanian mountains.

2.G. perplexa, T. Kirk in Trans. N.Z. Inst. xxix. (1897) 538 (name only).—A small suberect or prostrate bush 1–3 ft. high, rarely more; branches flexuous, often much and closely interlaced; bark dark red-brown; branchlets clothed with short white pubescence intermixed with long erect or spreading yellow - brown bristles. Leaves alternate, spreading, very shortly petiolate, ¼–½ in. long, lanceolate or linear-lanceolate or linear, often curved, acute or acuminate, serrate, the teeth usually bristle-pointed, thick and coriaceous, quite glabrous. Flowers small, solitary and axillary, often crowded at the ends of the branches; peduncles short, bracteolate, curved. Calyx - lobes minutely ciliolate. Corolla broadly urceolate, 1/10 in. long. Capsule usually included in the enlarged and-fleshy calyx-lobes, forming a berry-like fruit ½ in. in diam., but frequently the calyx remains dry and unchanged.—G-. antipoda var. ciliata, Hook. f. Fl. Nov. Zel. i. 161; Handb. N.Z. Fl. 175.

NoRth and South Islands, Stewart Island: Not uncommon in hilly and mountainous districts from Lake Taupo southwards. Sea-level to 3500 ft.

A very puzzling plant, in its usual state presenting a most distinct appearance, but there are intermediate forms which connect it with the variety microphylla of G. antipoda.

3.G. rupestris, R. Br. Prodr. 559.—An erect or more rarely procumbent or prostrate much-branched shrub varying in height from a few inches to 3 or 4 ft., sometimes attaining 5 to 6 ft. or more; branches stout, glabrous or slightly pubescent, occasionally setose. Leaves close-set, alternate, shortly petiolate, very variable in size and shape, ⅓–2 in. long, from oblong or elliptic-lanceolate to oblong or oblong-ovate or almost orbicular, acute or obtuse, crenu-late or serrulate, very thick and coriaceous, reticulated on both surfaces, often shining above, quite glabrous. Racemes axillary and terminal, often crowded towards the ends of the branches, simple or branched, few- or many-flowered, ¼–2 in. long; pedicels longer or shorter than the bracteoles. Flowers white. Calyx-lobes ovate, acute, ciliolate, usually remaining unaltered in fruit, although baccate specimens are not uncommon.—A. Gunu. Precur. n. 418; Raoul, Choix, 44; Hook. f. Fl. Nov. Zel. i. 161, t. 42; Handb. page 407N.Z. Fl. 175. G. Colensoi, Hook. f. Fl. Nov. Zel. i. 162. G. divergens, Col. in Trans. N.Z. Inst. xx. (1888) 198. G. subcoryru-bosa, Col. l.c. xxii. (1890) 476. G. glandulosa, Col. l.c. xxviii. (1896) 600. G. calycina, Gol. I.c. xxxi. (1899) 274. Andromeda rupestris, Forst. Prodr. n. 195; A. Rich. Fl. Nouv. Zel. 208, c. 27.

A highly variable plant, the numerous forms of which are best arranged under two heads, as under:—

Var. lanceolata.—Leaves large, oblong-lanceolate or obovate-lanceolate, acute, branches glabrous or more or less pubescent or setose.

Var. parvifolia.—Leaves smaller and broader, oblong or oblong-ovate to orbicular-ovate; branches glabrous or rarely pubescent.

North and South Islands: Not uncommon in hilly and mountainous districts from the Thames goldfields southwards. Sea-level to 5000 ft. November–February.

Some forms of this come very close to G. antipoda in foliage, but can always be distinguished by the truly racemose inflorescence.

4.G-. fagifolia, Hook. f. Fl. Nov. Zel. i. 162.—An erect; much- branched shrub 4–5 ft. high; branches spreading or ascending, rigid, younger ones more or less setose. Leaves alternate or sub- opposite, shortly petiolate, ½–1 in. long, oblong or ovate-oblong to broadly ovate, acute or subacute, cordate at the base, crenate- serrate, very thick and coriaceous, both surfaces finely reticulated, quite glabrous. Racemes axillary and terminal, ½–2 in. long, some times compound. Flowers white. Calyx-lobes ovate, acute, re maining unaltered in all the fruiting specimens I have seen.—Handb. N.Z. Fl. 175.

North Island: Near Rotorua, Rev. F. H. Spencer! Rotokakahi, G. Mair! Motukino, near Lake Taupo, Golenso! Kirk! 1000–2000 ft. January.

This appears to me to be a mere form of G. rupestris verging towards G. oppositifolia, or possibly a hybrid between the two plants.

5.G. oppositifolia, Hook. f. Fl. Nov. Zel. i. 162, t. 43.—A much-branched shrub 2–8 ft. high; branches spreading, glabrous or sparingly setose. Leaves opposite, sessile or nearly so, some times stem-clasping, 1½–2½ in. long or more, ovate or oblong-ovate, acute or obtuse, cordate at the base, crenate-serrate, very thick and coriaceous, both surfaces finely reticulated, glabrous or sparingly minutely setulose. Racemes axillary and terminal, the latter often compound, forming broad terminal panicles 2–4 in. long, with oppo site spreading branches. Flowers very numerous, white, about ⅙ in. long. Calyx-lobes ovate-triangular, acute, remaining un altered in all the fruiting specimens I have seen. Capsule dry.—Handb. N.Z. Fl. 175. G. multibracteolata, Gol. in Trans. N.Z. Inst. xxiv. (1892) 389. page 408

North Island: Abundant from 'Matamata, in the Upper Thames Valley, to Rofcorua, the Upper Waikato, and Taupo, Capt. G. Mair! Kirk! Petrie I T. F. C.; cliffs between Hawke's Bay and Taupo, Colenso; East Cape, between Whangaparaoa and Hicks Bay, Bishop Williams! near Wanganui, H. C. Field! 500–3500 ft. November–January.

A very handsome plant, easily recognised by the large opposite leaves, which are sessile and cordate at the base, and by the usually panicled racemes.

2.Pernettya, Gaud.

Glabrous or hispid rigid shrubs, usually of small size. Leaves small, alternate, shortly petiolate, penniveiued, serrate. Flowers small, axillary and solitary or racemose. Calyx 5-partite, not enlarged and succulent in fruit. Corolla urceolate or almost globose, shortly 5-lobed; lobes recurved. Stamens 10, included within the corolla-tube; filaments dilated at the base; anthers 2-celled, dehiscing by a large terminal pore, cells each with 2 erect awns. Ovary 5-lobed and 5-celled; ovules several in each cell; style cylindrical; stigma simple. Berry globose, 5-celled. Seeds numerous, minute, compressed.

A genus comprising about 15 species, all American except the one described below and a closely allied one from the mountains of Tasmania.

Pernettya macrostigma, Col. in Trans. N.Z. Inst. xxi. (1889) 92, is shown by the type specimens in Mr. Oolenso's herbarium to be Qaultheria cmtipoda var. microphylla. In like manner, P. polyphylla, Col. l.c. xxxi. (1899) 274, is identical with Pentachondra pumila.

1.P. nana, Col. in Trans. N.Z. Inst. xxiii. (1891) 389.—A small creeping densely matted little shrub; branches short, ascending, ½–3 in. high, rarely more, minutely puberulous towards the tips. Leaves very shortly petiolate, ⅙–¼ in. long, oblong-lanceolate to oblong, acute or subacute, very thick and coriaceous, glabrous or very minutely puberulous, entire or with 2–3 indistinct teeth on each side. Flowers 2–4 near the tips of the branches, solitary, axillary, about ⅙ in. long; peduncles snort, 2–3-bracteolate. Calyx-lobes ovate-triangular, acute, ciliolate. Corolla broadly urceolate. Stamens reaching above the base of the corolla-lobes; filaments 4 or 5 times as long as the anthers, gradually dilated downwards. Anthers oblong, each cell tipped with 2 short bristles. Style cylindrical, equalling the stamens in length; stigma minutely 5-toothed. Berry globose-depressed, seated in the persistent calyx, which is sometimes slightly enlarged and fleshy.—P. tasmanica, Hook.f. Hanclb. N.Z. Fl. 176, but not of Fl. Tasm. i. 242, t. 73, B. P. tasmanica var. neo-zealandica, Kirk in Traits. N.Z. Inst. xxvii. (1895) 351.

South Island: Canterbury—By the Porter River and in other places in the Broken River basin, Enys! Kirk! T. F. C.; Southern Alps, J. F. Armstrong! Mount Cook district, Suter! T. F. C.; Hopkins River, Haast. Otago—Hector Mountains and Mount Bonpland, Petrie! 2000–5000 ft. December–February.

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This was referred to P. tasmanica by Hooker, but it appears to constantly differ from that plant in the rather broader leaves, acute triangular calyx-lobes, longer filaments, which equal or exceed the style in length, and especially in the anther-cells having 2 minute awns at the tip, in this respect agreeing with the American species of the genus.