A. Flower-heads terminal.
1.Olearia semidentata, Decaisne, in Hook, f., Fl. N.Z., i., 115.
A small sparingly-branched shrub 1ft.—2ft. high; branches slender, sparingly clothed with loose tomentum. Leaves close-set, spreading or ascending, 1½in.—2 ½in. long, ¼in.—⅓in. broad, linear-lanceolate, acute, narrowed at the base, distantly serrate, white beneath, with thin appressed tomentum, coriaceous. Heads crowded on slender peduncles, equalling or exceeding the leaves, and clothed with distant linear bracts; involucral leaves in 3 series, acute. Achenes faintly striate, glabrous or faintly puberulous.
Hab. Chatham Islands: Dieffenbach, Captain Gilbert Mair, W. L. Williams, H. H. Travers, and others.
A charming plant, easily distinguished from all other species by the crowded linear, acute serrate leaves, which are sometimes less than ¼in. broad. The ray-florets are purple, those of the disc deep violet.
2. O. chathamica, n.s.
Of similar habit to the preceding, but more robust. Leaves excessively coriaceous, 1in.—2in. long, ⅓in.—⅔in. broad, ovate, or oblong-lanceolate, narrowed into a short broad petiole, acute, serrate, teeth with obtuse callous tips; white, with appressed tomentum beneath; midrib and lateral nerves prominent beneath. Flower-heads few, on slender peduncles with distant linear bracts, white beneath; involucral leaves in 2 series, the outer white, with loose tomentum; ray-florets with white ligulate corollas, disc-florets violet-purple. Achenes striated pubescent. O. operina, Hook, f., Handbk. N.Z. Fl., p. 731. O. angustifolia, var., J. Buchanan, Trans. N.Z. Inst. vii. (1874), pl. xv.
Hab. Chatham Islands.H. H. Travers!
Best distinguished fromO. semidentata by the broader, coriaceous leaves, with obtuse teeth; fromO. operina andO. angustifolia, by the slender peduncles and distant linear bracts. A charming plant. In the “Vegetation of the Chatham Islands,” under “O.semidentata,” p. 22, Baron von
Mueller, referring to this plant, remarks, “The leaves are not unlike those of O. colensoi”
3. O. operina. Hook, f., Fl. N.Z., i., 115.
A sparingly-branched shrub, 6ft.-12ft. high. Branches stout, loosely tomentose. Leaves very coriaceous, spreading, 2in.—4in. long, white with appressed tomentum beneath, narrowly obovate-Ianceolate, acuminate, narrowed into a winged petiole, teeth close, obtuse, callous; veins obscure beneath. Peduncles 1in.—3in. long, crowded, stout, clothed with short imbricating cottony bracts. Heads large, involucral leaves in 2–3 series, tomentose. Achenes silky. Arnica operina, Forster.
Var. β Branches short, stout; leaves short, excessively coriaceous, with more deeply-toothed margins. Peduncles stouter.
Hab. South Island: Martin's Bay to Preservation Inlet. Sea-level to 100ft. β Preservation Inlet.
It is remarkable that no drawing of this fine plant has been published. The heads are often very numerous, varying from four to eighteen, but more frequently from, six to ten; the rays are white, the disc-florets yellow.
At Puysegur Point an area of several acres was cleared when the lighthouse was erected, and is now covered with dwarf specimens of this species, sparingly intermixed with O. colensoi and O. traillii, the whole presenting a singular appearance owing to the compact strict habit, which is very different from the somewhat straggling habit of ordinary specimens.
4. O. angustifolia, Hook, f., Fl. N.Z., i., 115.
A shrub or small tree, 6ft.-20ft. high, with robust tomentose branches. Leaves 3in.–5in. long, narrow - lanceolate acuminate, narrowed below, sessile, excessively rigid and coriaceous, crenate or doubly crenate or serrate, the points being hard and rounded, white with appressed tomentum beneath, midrib and principal nerves prominent beneath. Heads 1½in.–2in. in diameter on stout peduncles, shorter than the leaves; bracts foliaceous, imbricating, white beneath. Involucral leaves in 2 series, the outer densely tomentose. Ray-florets ligulate, each with a linear scale at its base. Achene silky, grooved. Pappus short, unequal. T. Kirk, Forest Flora of N.Z., t. 138.
Hab. Exposed places by the sea, south of Paterson's Inlet, Stewart Island. Sea-level to 100ft.
The most beautiful species of the genus, and one of the rarest. Flower-heads from 3 to 10; ray-florets white, disc-florets violet-purple. Leaves fragrant. Distinguished
from all other pedunculate species by the narrow rigid foliage and foliaceous bracts.