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Products > Metrosideros kermadecensis 'Tahiti'
Metrosideros kermadecensis 'Tahiti' - Dwarf Pohutukawa

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Myrtaceae (Myrtles)
Origin: New Zealand (Australasia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Orange Red
Bloomtime: Spring
Synonyms: [M. villosa, M. kermadecensis 'Tahiti']
Height: 2-4 feet
Width: 2-4 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Seaside: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Metrosideros collina 'Tahiti' (Dwarf Pohutukawa) - This small slow growing shrub has neat gray-green thick rounded leaves and clusters of orange-red flowers. It was selected from Metrosideros kermadecensis for its compact growth (to 3 ft tall and as wide ), and for its free flowering habit. Scattered flowers appear on the bush through much of the year with the heaviest bloom in February, March and April . Butterflies, birds and insects are attracted to the attractive orange/scarlet blooms which appear in masses of puffs covering the bush. As with other Metrosideros, this cultivar is tolerant of salt spray and is useful in seaside plantings. Plant in sunny locations in well-draining soils with moderate irrigation. We had high hopes for this attractive plant for use as an excellent plant for large pots on patios, terraces and around pools or on steps but it has not proved to be vigorous enough for us to recommed for any large scale applications - several public plantings in Santa Barbara have proven that this plant might be too slow growing, though better results can be had if, after the plant flowers, the seed heads are pruned off to encourage new growth. This plant and Metrosideros 'Tahitian Sunset' are sometimes listed as cultivars of Metrosideros collina and at times as cultivars of M. kermadecensis, a plant coming from from the Kermadec Islands that lie about 500 miles north-east of New Zealand. Metrosideros kermadecensis is very closely related if not a synonym to Metrosideros collina var. villosa, a variety native to several Polynesian Islands which is also closely related to the Hawaiian species Metrosideros polymorpha. The genus name Metrosideros is derived from the Greek words 'metra' for "heartwood" and and 'sideron' for "iron", in reference to the hard wood of the genus.  This description is based on our research and observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery garden and in other gardens that we have visited. We will also incorporate comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have some additional information about this plant, in particular if this information is contrary to what we have written or if they have additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing Metrosideros kermadecensis 'Tahiti'.