Go to National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa
Volume 34, 1901
This text is also available in PDF
(6 MB) Opens in new window
– 317 –

New Species on Varieties mentioned in this Paper, with Notes or Descriptions.

The material at my disposal is in nearly every case quite insufficient to enable me to draw up satisfactory diagnoses, so for the present it must suffice to point out what seem to be differences between the species considered to be new and those to which they are most closely allied. In some cases differences in the seedling form are used as a specific character, and such seem, indeed, to me to be among the very best characters that can be presented, showing a distinction between species which is constant, and not one which depends so much on environment as the leaf-form of the adult, or at times even the flower.

1. Coprosma chathamica, sp. nov.

A low tree attaining a maximum height of 15 m., never a trailing shrub. Extremities of ultimate branchlets pubescent with short greyish-white hairs; bark brown, wrinkled and glabrous below.

Leaves oblong, obovate, obovate - oblong, or sometimes lanceolate, tapering gradually into the short petiole, often about 4.9 cm. long by 2.3 cm. broad; glabrous except for pubescence on short petiole, and a few scattered hairs on midrib and margins; upper surface dark-green and shining; under-surface very pale, strongly marked by reticulations of veins.

Female flowers: Calyx-limb truncate; corolla deeply divided into four lobes; lobes 3.5 mm. to 4 mm. long; drupe large, ovoid, 1.2 cm. long by 9 mm. through its thickest portion.

Seedling: Cotyledons large, 3 cm. by 1.8 cm., or larger or smaller, obovate, obtuse, glabrous except on short petiole; early seedling leaves larger than the cotyledons, oblong, acute, thin, densely ciliated and hairy on petioles and midrib, with hairs scattered also over surface of lamina; lamina 3.4 cm. by 1.9 cm. to 2.25 cm. by 1.2 cm., or larger or smaller. Stem and upper part of hypocotyl pilose, with hairs similar to those of leaf; hairs white, but sometimes red.

This species is C. baueriana of Buchanan's list. It is referred to C. petiolata, Hook, f., by Mr. T. Kirk (37, p. 232). Mr. T. F. Cheeseman has kindly sent me specimens of the latter species, collected by himself in the Kermadec Islands, for comparison. These have shorter pubescence than C.

– 318 –

chathamica, giving a grey colour to the twigs; the corolla lobes are very short, and the stigmatic hairs are much shorter than in C. chathamica. C. chathamica is also always a tree, and never a shrub, as is the case with C. petiolata. Seedlings of Coprosma petiolata are much wanted.

2. Dracophyllum arboreum, sp. nov.

Always a low tree, never a shrub Passes in course of development through a broad-leaved juvenile form, which persists until plant is 3.5 m. tall, when the adult shorter needle-shaped leaves make their appearance. Adult trees usually have some shoots bearing only juvenile leaves. Juvenile leaves 20 cm. long by 1.5 cm. broad, gradually tapering from base to a fine point. Adult leaves needle-shaped, 7.5 cm. long by 2 mm. broad. Both forms of leaves tomentose on margin. Flowers very similar to those of D. scoparium. See coloured plate in “Flora Antarctica” (30).

If Dracophyllum scoparium, to which this plant was referred by both Hooker and Buchanan, does not go through the same remarkable changes, I cannot see that they can possibly be the same species, notwithstanding similarity of flowers.

3. Dracophyllum paludosum, sp. nov.

After a good deal of hesitation I decided to give a name to this species, for it was necessary to have some name to distinguish this plant from D. arboreum. D. arboreum. From the latter species it differs in its shrubby habit, and especially in its never passing through an extended juvenile stage with broad leaves. Its racemes are rather shorter than those of D. arboreum, and its flowers rather smaller. Perhaps this plant may prove identical with D. scoparium or with some of the forms of D. urvilleanum.

4. Myrsine coxii, sp. nov.

A shrub with ultimate branchlets pubescent and leaves forming rather a dense mass, reaching a maximum height of about 4 m., but often very much lower.

Leaves narrow-obovate, tapering gradually at base into a short petiole, averaging about 2.4 cm. by 9 mm.

Flowers in fascicles of three or more, rarely in pairs, crowded together on the naked portions of the ultimate branches, occasionally 1-flowered in the axils of the upper leaves; almost sessile, but pedicels lengthening a little in fruit.

Calyx 4-fid to slightly below middle; segments ovate, with broad base, pale-green, ciliated, marked with a few red glandular dots, acute.

– 319 –

Petals 4, narrow obovate-oblong, 3.25 mm. by 2 mm., pale yellowish-green with margin stained pale-purple, much more purple in bud, ciliated, marked towards apex with several glandular red dots, obtuse.

Fruit globose, bright mauve-coloured, 5 mm. long, by 6 mm. broad.

This plant is probably the Myrsine nummularia of Buchanan's list, to which it bears no resemblance whatsoever. It differs from M. chatharmica in several points, the latter plant being a small tree with a thick trunk, with leaves larger and proportionately broader than M. coxii, and having flowers in fascicles of more than three, with distinct pedicels. It also comes into bloom a month later than M. coxii. It gives me great pleasure to call this species after my friend Mr. F. A. D. Cox.

5. Veronica gigantea, sp. nov.

This is V. salicifolia of Buchanan's list. It differs from V. salicifolia in being always a low tree with a distinct trunk. Its seedling form also is quite distinct from that of any form of V. salicifolia examined by me. The early leaves are very coarsely and deeply toothed, and their margins are evenly and closely ciliated with hooked white hairs. The stem is extremely pubescent, and even the hypocotyl is quite downy. Later juvenile leaves are larger than the adult leaves, lanceolate, sessile, entire, acute, ciliated, and with still longer hairs on the prominent midrib, and such are found on a plant 32 cm. tall or even much taller. The stem is usually purple, rather soft, and covered with many long soft hairs pressed to its surface. My notes say, “The intense hairiness of this plant even at this stage is very remarkable.” The juvenile plant much resembles V. pubescens of New Zealand, for a specimen of which rare plant I am indebted to Mr. Cheeseman, but the inflorescence brings it closer to V. salicifolia. The adult leaves are narrow-lanceolate, quite sessile, 8.3 cm. long by 1.8 cm. broad, minutely ciliated, and with the midrib not nearly so much keeled as in V. salicifolia.

6. Plagianthus chathamicus, sp. nov.

I have separated this plant from P. betulinus because they differ in the seedling state, and P. chathamicus is also never furnished with reversion shoots. I have gone at some length into this matter elsewhere, and have, as before stated, nothing further to add at present (10).

7. Sophora chathamica, sp. nov.

Exactly the same remarks apply to this species as those made above with regard to Plagianthus chathamicus. I have

– 320 –

already published a note as to its seedling form (9, p. 373), and shown it to be probably distinct from that of any other hitherto described New Zealand species of Sophora.

8. Geranium traversii, Hook, f., var. elegans, var. nov.

Petals pink, veined on upper surface with fine lines of darker pink. The typical G. traversii has white flowers.

9. Linum monogynum, Forst., var. chathamicum, var. nov.

Petals broadly striped or flaked with pale blue. The type has white flowers.

10. Olearia chathamica var. dendyi, var. nov.

Tomentum (when dry) yellower and denser than that of the type. Florets purple. The type has white florets, which, when fading, are of a purplish colour.

Hab. Pitt Island. Collected by Professor A. Dendy, after whom I have much pleasure in naming this variety.

11. Agropyrum coxii, Petrie, sp. nov.

A description of this very distinct grass by Mr Petrie is, I understand, to appear in the same volume of the Transactions as this paper.

12. Poa chathamica, Petrie, sp. nov.

Mr. Petrie considers this grass closely related to P. anceps. A description is included in the same paper as that containing Agropyrum coxii.