Native plants


Scientific name: Kunzea sp.
English name: Common Kanuka

Pioneer Tree (over 15m) - native to the Wellington Region
Suits: dry, partial shade, sunny, shelter, exposure, coastal forest garden, coastal and dune garden, wetlands and water features

About Kanuka

The common kanuka, not yet botanically named is very similar to the more shortlived manuka. Earlier placed together in the same genus, kanuka is now in its own genus of kunzea. Mostly a small to medium sized tree kanuka grows taller than kanuka, up to 20 meters with a trunk to up to 60 cm. While manuka lives for about 60 years before dying off, giving place to regenerating secondary species, kanuka lives uo to 200 years before being replaced by more shade tolerant species. Like manuka the bark is light brown and with an alomst papery texture, pelling off in stripes. Flowers are smaller than manuka and white providing an important source of pollen and nectar for native bees, flies, moths, beetles and geckos. The leaves are bright green, small, almost neddle like, however soft when grasping, unlike manuka. Kanuka can act as an important tool for re-vegetating bare slopes and banks. By creating shade and shelter from the wind, they provide an excellent nursery for other, slower growing native plants.

It grows well on most soil types except very damp, and is tolerant of wind and drought.


Provides for lizards

  • Nectar

Read more about gardening for lizards.

More detail