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Volume 27, 1894
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Art. XI.—A Revision of the New Zealand Gentians.

[Read before the Wellington Philosophical Society, 28th November, 1894.]


The first gentians observed in New Zealand were discovered during Cook's second voyage (1772–73), and were described by Forster as G. montana and G. saxosa. In 1839 Grisebach described a third species in his “Genera et Species Gentianeæ,” under the name of G. pleurogynoides, which was reduced to a variety of G. saxosa by Sir Joseph Hooker in his original “Flora of New Zealand,” but allowed specific rank in the “Handbook of the New Zealand Flora.” In 1844 Hooker described two other species, G. grisebachii and G. bellidifolia, in “Icones Plantarum.” The former was reduced by him to a variety of G. montana, while the latter was referred to G. saxosa. In the “Flora Antarctica” (1845) the learned author figured two additional species, G. concinna and G. cerina, while a form of the latter was described by Hombron in the Botany of the “Voyage au Pôle Sud” (1848), under the name of G. campbellii, although really found on the Auckland Islands. In 1871 Mr. J. F. Armstrong published a form of G. montana under the name of G. novce-zelandice; and in 1880 Mr. J. B. Armstrong described the typical form of G. saxosa, a purely littoral species, as G. hookeri, a name appropriated by Grisebach for a South American plant in 1839. In the following account five new species are described, and G. bellidifolia is restored to specific rank.

In the “Flora Australiensis” Bentham united G. pleurogynoides and G. saxosa under G. montana, treating G. saxosa as a variety. The learned Baron Von Mueller unites the three forms under G. saxosa in his “Second Systematic Census of Australian Plants,” and is supported by Sir Joseph Hooker in the recently-published “Index Kewensis.” Notwithstanding all my respect for these illustrious authors, the propriety of this course seems to me at least doubtful. While fully

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admitting that all the New Zealand species are closely related to G. montana, long-continued observation of these plants in the recent state has convinced me that they may be distinguished without any great amount of difficulty. Further, it must be held doubtful whether the true G. saxosa has been found in Australia. I have seen no Australian specimens, and, in my opinion, it could not possibly be included under the description of G. montana, var. saxosa, in “Flora Australiensis,” iv., 373, of G. saxosa in Baron von Mueller's “Key to the System of Victorian Plants,” 357, nor of G. saxosa in C. Moore's “Handbook of the Flora of New South Wales,” 311, all of which agree in ignoring the remarkable calyx of the New Zealand plant. It may possibly be found on the southern coast of Tasmania, but the probability seems to me extremely small. Under the description of species (p. 338) I have tried to account for this strongly-marked plant having been confused with others, and will only add that, even if G. montana and G. pleurogynoides should ultimately be found inseparable, G. saxosa must always be maintained as a distinct species.

A genus so widely distributed must necessarily comprise a large proportion of variable species, but the New Zealand forms are remarkable for the excessive amount of variation exhibited by several. Not only does it affect the habit, stature, branching, texture, and inflorescence as well as the shape and size of the flowers, but it extends to the reproductive system: both calyx and corolla vary greatly in the depth to which they are divided, and in the outline of the segments, while even the form and position of the ovary are affected in some instances: the typical form having the ovary sessile, while in a trivial variety it becomes stipitate. This variation renders it difficult to find characters sufficiently stable to warrant the constitution of species, and makes it necessary to define an unusually large number of varieties. There is evidence leading to the conclusion that hybridization is largely responsible for this condition, but to a great extent it is due to environment. A careful study of the principal forms of G. cerina, under natural conditions, affords a striking demonstration of the power of external conditions to modify the organs of the vegetative system. The chief facts may be briefly stated here.

The form distinguished as suberecta is characterized by slender suberect stems, rather distant and somewhat membranous leaves, which are scarcely glossy, but are set off by a vast profusion of attractive flowers. It is not easy to imagine anything more beautiful than a mass of this fine plant with its profuse red, purple, violet, or waxy-white flowers, the latter not infrequently variegated with longitudinal red stripes or

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veins. But this state is only to be seen in sheltered situations on the hills where nutritive matter is abundant and the plant has a sufficiency of saline moisture without being saturated by heavy spray.

In forma cerina the stems are more robust, trailing or prostrate; the leaves are large, fleshy, and shining; while the flowers are but sparingly produced, are of small size, and somewhat hidden amongst the luxuriant leaves. This form is found only amongst rocks often washed by waves, and constantly subjected to heavy spray. If growing a few feet above the actual reach of the waves, but still subject to heavy spray, the prostrate branches are much shorter, the glossy leaves are more closely set, while the flowers are larger and more brightly coloured.

In forma concinna the stems are short and crowded, never exceeding 3in. in length; the leaves are small and close-set, with solitary minute axillary purple or white flowers in the uppermost axils. Charming compact little specimens less than lin. in height may often be found bearing scores of minute flowers, which are but rarely brightly coloured. This form is found chiefly on the surface of huge masses of Trichocolea tomentella and other Hepaticæ, often in vast abundance, in situations sheltered by a close scrubby growth of various shrubs and trees, but still exposed to the finely divided sea-spray which constantly impregnates the atmosphere of the Auckland Islands. Hence its annual duration, diminutive size, crowded branches, close-set leaves, and minute flowers are chiefly due to a lack of mineral constituents in its nutriment, and possibly, at certain times, to a lack of moisture also.

All these forms are connected by a series of insensible gradations, so that it is impossible to say at any given point in the series, “Here is a line of division.” The change is so gradual that, although it can be easily made out, it is impossible to say where one form begins and another ends.

All the New Zealand species agree in having a five-cleft calyx, a monopetalous corolla more or less deeply divided into five segments which are never barbed, five epipetalous stamens with small versatile anthers, and one-celled two-valved many-seeded capsules.

Their local distribution is somewhat remarkable, as they are not represented in the extreme northern part of the colony, their limit in that direction being attained on Hikurangi, a little to the north of the 38th parallel, from whence they extend southward to the Chatham Islands, Stewart Island, Antipodes Island, the Auckland and Campbell Islands, but do not reach Macquarie Island, thus illustrating the law previously observed in the Northern Hemisphere that, although plenti-

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ful in elevated regions of both temperate and tropical zones, even reaching the snow-line, upwards of 16,000ft., they become rare or absent in higher latitudes. Generally the New Zealand forms are restricted to alpine or subalpine situations, but G. saxosa, G. cerina, G. antipoda, and G. antarctica descend to the sea-level, and are never found out of the reach of sea-spray, the first named being restricted to Foveaux Strait, the others to the Antarctic Islands. G. montana, G. bellidifolia, and perhaps G. pleurogynoides are found in the North Island, the first extending from the East Cape southwards to Stewart Island, the second only to Otago, the third to the Chatham Islands and Otago; and the remaining three species are restricted to the South Island, two of them being remarkably local. All the species appear to be endemic except G. montana, G. pleurogynoides, and G. bellidifolia, which are also found in Tasmania and the southern part of Australia.

Bearing in mind the extreme rarity of white-flowered gentians in other countries, it is remarkable that all the local species primarily produce white flowers, although G. antipoda, G. cerina, and G. antarctica var. imbricata exhibit also various shades of red, purple, and violet, or occasionally white with vertical streaks of red: the other species are pure-white, or rarely exhibit a pale-lemon or sulphur tinge, which, however, never merges into a true yellow, such as that of Gentiana lutea, or the common buttercup. Sometimes, however, this very pale tint becomes greatly intensified in herbarium specimens, and has led to the erroneous idea that some of the New Zealand gentians have yellow flowers.* Dr. Jameson, in his “Botanical Notes on the Flora of the Andes of Peru and Columbia,” remarks, “Of sixteen species of gentian with which I am acquainted, one-half are red, four purple, two blue, one yellow, and one white,” thus offering a strong contrast to the New Zealand species, all of which are primarily white.

In the following descriptions an attempt has been made to differentiate the more striking permanent departures from the typical form of the species as varieties, but the success attained is less complete than could have been wished, although possibly sufficient has been done to prevent that sense of confusion which often troubles the minds of young students on finding a number of apparently dissimilar plants united under a common name.

[Footnote] * A parallel to this curious change of colour in dried gentians is afforded by certain white-flowered veronicas, notably V. elliptica, V. vernicosa, V. macrocarpa, some forms of V. salicifolia, & c., which, after being placed in the herbarium, sooner or later assume a purple tint.

[Footnote] † “Flora Antarctica,” i., 55.

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A. Cauline leaves few, sessile.


Gentiana lineata, n.s. Plate XXVII.

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Perennial; densely tufted, much-branched from the root-stock. Leaves radical, ½in. long, 1/30in. broad, narrow linear-lanceolate, acute, narrowed into a flat petiole. Scapes lin.-2in. high, naked or with one or two pairs of short linear leaves below the middle, 1-flowered. Calyx divided nearly to the base, segments linear-subulate, acute or acuminate; corolla divided fully two-thirds of its length, segments acute; ovary sessile.

Hab. South Island: Hollows on the crest of the Longwood Range, Southland (1887); T. Kirk.

A curious little plant, in some places forming a compact sward. Its nearest ally is G. montana, Forst. It is perhaps the most easily recognized of all the New Zealand species.


G. montana, Forster. Prodr., n. 133.

Annual; stems numerous or few, decumbent or suberect, 3in.-18in. long. Leaves usually distant, lower spathulate or oblong-spathulate, cartilaginous, obtuse, narrowed into petioles as long as the blade; cauline ovate or oblong, sessile or shortly petioled. Flowers usually numerous, on slender spreading pedicels lin.-6in. long. Calyx lobes narrow linear subulate, acuminate; corolla divided half-way down, segments subacute; ovary sessile or rarely stipitate. A. Rich, Fl. Nov. Zel., 203; R. Br., Prodr., 450; Willd., Sp. Pl., i., 1334; A. Cunn., Precurs., n. 399; Raoul, Choix, 44; Grisebach in DC., Prodr., ix., 99. Hook. f., Fl. N.Z., i., 178; Fl. N.Z., i., 271; Handbook N.Z. Fl., 290. Bentham, Fl. Austr., iv., 373 (partim).

Hab. Chiefly in mountain districts from the East Cape to Stewart Island. Descends to sea-level in Canterbury and Otago. Ascends to 3,500ft.

Forma typica. Stems prostrate or suberect, wiry, much-branched. Flowers numerous.

Forma grisebachii. Stems erect or suberect, slender, sparingly branched; ovary often stipitate in this form. G. grisebachii, Hook. f., in Ic. Pl., t. 636.

Forma nova-zelandiæ. Slender, 1in.-5in. high, leaves more numerous, ovate-spathulate. G. nova-zelandiæ, J. F. Armstrong in Trans. N.Z. Inst., iv. (1871), 291; “Index Kewensis,” i.

Hab. North Island: Ruahine Range. South Island: Waimakariri, Rangitata, & c.; chiefly in damp situations.

The above forms pass into each other by insensible gradations. The last is merely a temporary state, most plentiful in moist seasons.

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G. spenceri, n.s. Plate XXVII. A and B.

Annual; stems erect, very slender, 3in.-7in. high. Leaves rosulate, broadly ovate-spathulate, about lin. long, narrowed into short petioles, obtuse or rounded at the apex; cauline leaves narrow oblong- spathulate, petiolate. Flowers in 2–4-flowered lateral or terminal involucrate umbels, pedicels short. Calyx equalling or exceeding the narrow corolla, segments ovate-oblong, obtuse or subacute; ovary sessile. Leaves of the terminal involucre ovate, petiolate.

Hab. South Island: Mount Rochfort; 2,000ft.; Rev. F. H. Spencer! (1880).

I have only seen two specimens of this curious plant, both of which are too far advanced to be quite satisfactory; but, after waiting fourteen years in the vain hope of obtaining better material, I venture to publish it as a distinct species, chiefly on account of the petiolate involucral leaves and small flowers with calyx teeth fully equalling the corolla.


Gentiana pleurogynoides, Griseb. Gen. et Sp. Gent., 236 (Emend.).

Annual, erect, Slender or robust, 6in.-18in. high. Radical leaves 1in.-3in. long, petiolate, ovate-spathulate or oblong-spathulate or lanceolate, obtuse or acute; cauline few, sessile. Flowers usually less than ½in. diameter, in terminal cymens or umbels. Calyx divided from one-third to two-thirds of its length; segments usually acute, divergent, shorter than the corolla; ovary shortly stipitate. D C., Prodr., ix., 99; Hook. f., Handbook N.Z. Fl., 190.

Hab. South Island. Common.

Var. umbellata.

Much-branched from the base; radical leaves oblong or ovate-spathulate; cauline sessile, broad. Flowers in terminal or lateral umbels; pedicels slender; calyx segments acute or obtuse; ovary almost sessile.

Hab. South Island, D'Urville Island (sepals acute), Chatham Islands (sepals obtuse).

Var. rigida.

Root stout, usually simple; stems erect, simple, or rarely branched, stout. Leaves 1in.—3in. long, narrow oblong-spathulate, obtuse; cauline in one or two pairs, smaller. Flowers forming a narrow terminal corymb. Calyx campanulate, segments very short, narrow-linear, acute, divergent; ovary stipitate.

Hab. Mountains of the South Island; common; 2,000ft.—4,000ft.

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G. corymbifera, n.s.

Perennial; root as thick as a man's finger; stems one or more, erect, robust, 12in.–18in. high, naked. Leaves all radical, 3in.–6in. long, oblong or narrow oblong-spathulate, petiolate, coriaceous or fleshy. Lower bracts 2in.–3in. long. Flowers large, in broad densely-crowded corymbs; pedicels winged; calyx tubular, erect, cleft for half its length, segments shortly deltoid acuminate, shorter than the corolla; ovary stipitate. G. saxosa γ, Hook. f., Handbook N.Z. Fl., 191.

Hab. South Island; mountains of Nelson and Canterbury; 2,500ft.–3,500ft.

Sir Joseph Hooker pointed out the remarkable calyx of this plant in the Handbook, but placed it under G. saxosa, Forst. The immense compact corymbs, from 5in. to 12in. in diameter, at once attract attention to this fine plant, which is much larger than any other New Zealand species.


G. bellidifolia, Hook. f. In Hook. Icon. Pl., t. 635.

Perennial; radical leaves rosulate, spathulate or ovate-spathulate, petiolate; cauline few, ovate, sessile. Stems few or many, ascending, 1in.–3in. long, 1–3 – or 5 – flowered. Calyx one-third the length of the corolla, cleft for half its length, subacute, rarely acute or obtuse; ovary shortly stipitate; style very short; stigma broad. G. saxosa a, Hook. f., in Handbook N.Z. Fl., 191.

Hab, Mountain districts from the East Cape to Otago; 1,500ft.–4,500ft. Most frequent in the South Island.

Single-flowered specimens of this form sometimes offer a transition to var. pulchella.

Var. patula.

Stems numerous, 6in.–18in. high, shortly decumbent, spreading. Radical leaves oblong-spathulate; cauline oblong, sessile. Flowers large, in few-flowered terminal umbels or trichotomous cymes, or corymbs. Calyx deeply divided, segments linear-oblong or lanceolate-oblong, acute or subacute. G. saxosa β, Hook. f., in Handbook N.Z. Fl., 191.

Hab. South Island: Nelson to Otago. Common in the mountains; 1,500ft.–3,500ft.

Var. pulchella.

Stems erect, slender, 3in.–6in. high. Radical leaves ovate-spathulate or narrow oblong-spathulate; petioles slender, exceeding the blade; cauline few, sessile. Flowers in terminal, involucrate umbels, rarely terminal, or the lower cymose. Pedicels exceeding the leaves. Calyx half the length of the corolla; sepals oblong, obtuse or subacute.

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Hab. South Island: Arthur's Pass, and other localities in the Canterbury Alps; 2,500ft.–3,000ft.

Var. vacillata.

Stems suberect numerous, very slender, 3in.–4in. long, 1–3-flowered. Leaves linear-spathulate; cauline smaller, narrowed below, but not petioled. Calyx cleft nearly to the base; sepals broadly oblong, obtuse.

Hab. South Island: Canterbury Alps; J. B. Armstrong! Otago—Mount Earnslaw; T. Kirk. Apparently local.

Var. divisa.

Stems very slender, erect, excessively divided from the base. Radical leaves obovate, membranous, petioles broad; cauline leaves short, broad, sessile or rarely broadly petiolate; pedicels narrowly winged. Flowers forming a lax, open corymb. Calyx much shorter than the corolla, cleft nearly to the base, segments linear-oblong, obtuse or subacute; corolla cleft nearly to the base, lobes rounded at the apex, broad, spreading.

Hab. South Island: Mountains of Nelson and Canterbury; T. H. Potts! N. T. Carrington. Apparently local.

Var. magnifica.

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Leaves all radical, rosulate, narrow obovate-spathulate, shortly petiolate, the remains of old petioles crowded below. Scapes very numerous, 1in.–3in. long, with one or two pairs of linear bracts, having a single large pedicellate flower in the axis of each, the whole forming a globular mass 4in.–8in. or more in diameter. Calyx fully equalling the corolla-tube, cleft for two-thirds of its length, segments broadly oblong, ⅛in.–3/16in. broad, subacute or obtuse; corolla deeply divided, lobes broadly rounded.

Hab. South Island: Ridges near the summit of Mount Captain, Amuri; 4,500ft.; T. Kirk.

A singular and beautiful form, which will probably be found to deserve specific honours. The plants are solitary, and scattered over the slope of the ridge, so that they resemble large snowballs, and attract the attention of the observer long before he reaches their habitat. No traces of leaves are visible until the plant is dug up, when the crowded remains of dead leaves at the base of the rosette, combined with the stout root, afford evidence of the lengthened period of duration enjoyed by this form. The flowers become yellow during desiccation. It is nearly allied to G. cerina, Hook. f.

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B. Cauline leaves petiolate.


G. saxosa, Forster. In Act. Holm., 1777, p. 183, t. 5. Plate XXVIIc.

Perennial; stems prostrate or ascending, 3in.–5in. long, sometimes inclined to be naked above. Leaves cartilaginous or fleshy, radical rosulate, spathulate, ¾in.–1 ½in. long, narrowed into long petiole; cauline smaller, petiolate, sometimes distant. Flowers terminal, solitary or in 3–5-flowered cymes. Calyx about one-third as long as the corolla, or shorter; segments fleshy, subulate, recurved at the tips; corolla rotate, segments rounded; ovary stipitate. Forster, Prodr., n. 132; A. Rich., Fl. Nov. Zel., 202; Willd., Sp. Pl., i., 1357; A. Cunn., Precurs., n. 398; Grisebach, in DC., Prodr., ix., 99; Raoul, Choix, 44; Hook. f., Fl. N.Z., i., 178, et Handbook N.Z. Fl., 190 (in part). G. saxosa, var. recurvata, T. Kirk, in Trans. N.Z. Inst., xvii. (1884), 224. G. hookeri, J. B. Armstrong, in Trans. N.Z. Inst., xiii., 340 (not of Grisebach).

Hab. South Island: On maritime rocks, Dusky Bay; G. Forster, 1773; A. Menzies, 1791. Northern shore of Foveaux Strait, Ruapuke, Dog Island, Green Island, and other places in Foveaux Strait; Rarotonga Island, coast of Stewart Island; T. Kirk. Ascends the Bluff Hill to 800ft.; F. W. Hutton! Only found in situations exposed to the sea-spray.

Most closely related to G. cerina, Hook, f., the sepals of which sometimes exhibit a slight tendency to become recurved. It is singular that this plant should not have been observed from the time it was collected by Menzies in 1791 until it was collected by Professor F. W. Hutton on the Bluff Hill in 1873, and it is still more remarkable that although so easily distinguished it has been confused with G. montana and other species. Mr. N. E. Brown, of the Kew Herbarium, who has kindly compared my specimens with the types in the Liverpool fasciculus of Forster's plants recently presented to Kew, assures me that it exactly corresponds: it is well known that the fasciculi distributed by Forster are of uneven value, and it may well be that in the set originally consulted by Sir Joseph Hooker the present plant was represented by something else. Mr. J. B. Armstrong, in his description of G. hookeri, does not mention the recurved calyx segments, and has further confused the plant with the alpine G. saxosa γ of the Handbook—the G. corymbifera of this paper, a robust erect species which bears no resemblance to Forster's plant.


G. cerina, Hook. f. Fl. Antarctica, i., 55, t. 36.

Perennial; stems few or many, 1in.—15in. long, suberect, decumbent or prostrate, slender or stout, leafy. Leaves

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usually coriaceous or fleshy, shining obovate- or spathulate-oblong or linear-spathulate; cauline smaller, ¼ in.- 1 ½in. long. Flowers on slender pedicels crowded towards the tips of the branches, sometimes forming lax corymbs, rarely trichotomous. Calyx divided nearly to the base, equalling the corolla, rarely longer, oblong or oblong-spathulate, obtuse or rounded at the apex, broad; ovary stipitate. Stems narrowly winged above. G. concinna, Hook. f., Fl. Antarc., i., 53, t. 35. G. campbellii, Hombr., in Voy. au Pôle Sud, Bot. 26. t. 31, c. Dicot.

Hab. Auckland Islands; sea-level to 900ft.

One of the most beautiful plants in the flora, the corollas varying in colour from a pure waxy white to white with a vertical red stripe, purple, reddish-purple, and violet. It is extremely variable in habit and luxuriance, according to the nature of the habitat in which it is growing. Three principal forms may be recognized:—

Forma a, suberecta. Stems decumbent, ascending, slender, 6in.—12in. high or more. Leaves spathulate-oblong, petiolate or rarely sessile by a broad base. Flowers usually in lax corymbs on long or short pedicels. Calyx segments broadly oblong.

Hab. Sheltered places on the hills up to nearly 1,000ft.

Forma b, cerina. Stems prostrate or trailing. Leaves very thick and fleshy, shining, obovate or spathulate-oblong, narrowed below, or rarely sessile. Flowers smaller, often sunk amidst the terminal leaves. Calyx segments sometimes slightly recurved.

Hab. On maritime rocks and in places exposed to heavy spray.

Forma c, concinna. Usually annual. Stems numerous, 1in.—3in. long, densely crowded. Leaves all linear-oblong, obtuse, ¼in.—½in. long. Flowers solitary, small, in axils of upper leaves. Calyx segments shorter than the corolla.

Hab. On masses of Trichocolea tomentella and other Hepaticæ.

The three forms mentioned pass into each other by the most insensible gradations, although the extremes present a wide difference. Sir Joseph Hooker agrees with me in considering it impossible to separate G. concinna specifically.


G. antarctica, n.s.

Annual; whole plant minutely verrucose. Stem stout, erect, excessively foliaceous, 3in.—10in. high. Radical leaves 1in.—2in. long, rather fleshy, oblong or oblong-spathulate or lanceolate, narrowed into flat petioles, 3–5-nerved; cauline smaller, oblong-spathulate, petioles short and broad, equalling the blade or shorter, membranous when dry. Flowers

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crowded in much-branched slender axillary leafy cymes, each, flower in the axil of and exceeded by a linear bract; pedicels short. Calyx divided nearly to the base, segments linear-oblong, obtuse; corolla small, papery, scarcely exceeding the calyx; ovary stipitate. G. concinna γ, robusta, Hook, f., in Fl. Antarc., i., 53.

Hab. Campbell Island.

Easily recognized by the pale greenish-yellow hue of the entire plant, the minutely verrucose surface of all its parts, and its excessively-branched slender inflorescence, the flowers being almost hidden amongst the crowded leaves and bracts. Sometimes it is reduced to a broad rosette of leaves with densely-crowded flowers.

Referring to this plant, Sir Joseph Hooker writes*: “The var. γ I have never found in flower, and it may prove a distinct species, though the roots are annual and its leaves are of the same nature as the larger specimens of G. concinna.


Var. imbricata.

Stems 1in.–3in. high, simple, erect, rigid, leaves at base coriaceous, with a stout marginal nerve, closely imbricating, ovate or ovate-spathulate, narrowed below. Flowers solitary in the axils of the upper leaves, which are shorter and broader. Calyx divided nearly to base; segments linear-oblong, subacute; corolla longer than the calyx; ovary stipitate. G. concinna β, elongata, Hook. f., in Fl. Antarc., i., 54.

Hab. Campbell Island: T. Kirk.

The entire absence of minute warts, the coriaceous leaves with strong marginal nerves, and the larger flowers tend to prove that this plant is worthy of specific honours, which I refrain from awarding until specimens in a more advanced stage can be examined.


G. antipoda, n.s.

Perennial; minutely verrucose on stem, leaves, petioles, pedicels, and sepals. Stems numerous, 3in.—10in. high, decumbent at the base, erect. Leaves ¾ in.—1in. long, lingulate or linear-spathulate, obtuse, ascending, rather crowded on the lowest fourth or third of the stem; cauline distant, narrower. Flowers shortly pedicellate, solitary, axillary or on short 3–5-flowered branchlets, closely appressed to the stem for the upper three-fourths of its length, forming a narrow strict tri-chotomous cyme. Calyx divided nearly to the base; segments linear-oblong, subacute, shorter than the corolla-tube; corolla narrow, diaphanous.

Forma pallida. Stems yellow, corolla white.

[Footnote] * “Flora Antarctica,” i., 54.

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Forma rubra. Stems red, corolla white with longitudinal red stripe.

Hab. Antipodes Island: T. Kirk.

The strict fastigiate habit of this plant and the lingulate leaves readily distinguish it from any other New Zealand species. Although the flowers are produced in great abundance they are not easily detected at first sight, partly from their being much obscured by the overtopping bracts, but chiefly from the peculiar coloration, the form with red stems developing white flowers vertically streaked with red, and the form with yellow stems exhibiting delicate white flowers.

Explanation Of Plates XXVII.–XXVIIc.
Plate XXVII.

Gentiana lineata, T. Kirk. Natural size.


Gentiana spenceri, T. Kirk. Natural size.


Gentiana spenceri, T. Kirk.

  • Fig. 1. Flower, enlarged.

  • Fig. 2. Capsule with bracts.

  • Fig. 3. Ovary, enlarged.

Plate XXVIIc.

Gentiana saxosa, Forster. Natural size.

  • Fig. 1. Flower, enlarged.