Leatherleaf expanses of the Southern Ruahines

Leatherleaf expanses of the Southern Ruahines

Leatherleaf expanses of the Southern Ruahines from Takapari Road



  • OldGoat OldGoat It seems that (theory) the change in vegetation (a species become becoming dominant) in north Tararuas and southern Ruahine could be attributable to the suitable weather, elevation and browse of introduced animals,plus pre European / Maori habitation and natural fires caused by lightning strikes.I know a bloke ex DOC , who had to extinguish a lightning struck dead tree in the Tararuas with explosives - this cause of fires must be relatively common .
    11 December 2011
  • john dutchie john dutchie I work a lot with our native plants and the variations in our Olearias is huge.Ones like O.crebra have leaves over 200mm long yet O.lineata has needle thin leaves.I tried growing a O.colensoi at home with no luck they dont like lowland conditions.Yes i heard the climate change theory and that for sure has merit but theres no doubt that animal browse and fires have also caused forest collapse and leatherwood spread in the southern Ruahines.
    8 December 2011
  • madpom madpom I'm amazed to discover that leatherwood is an olearia (Olearia Colensoi after the famous missionary William Colenso). Looks nothing like the olearias of central Otago - Hectorii, Lineata, Odorata, etc.
    8 December 2011
  • OldGoat OldGoat Just remembered , my son has shot a few deer of the Takapari Rd...and has got himself tangled in the olearia(leatherwood) a couple of times .One he shot of the side of the road took him 4 hrs to get to, gut and carry back to his vehicle,lucky he had a torch.
    7 December 2011
  • OldGoat OldGoat The Ruahine has a very interesting pre European botanical history, i believe, but im not qualified to comment. It was thought that opposum damaged large areas of forest, but that has been questioned as there is also a theory that climate change( way back in time) also is a factor.Dont think Jacko had the old Bryant & May slasher though!Will make a few discrete enquiries.
    7 December 2011
  • john dutchie john dutchie Unfortunately a lot of this is the result of past fires and also animal browsing which has resulted in forest collapse.Leatherwood is certainly part of the Ruahine ecosystem but not to this extent,quite a bit of the northern Tararuas are also like this .When i was at Burn Hut you can still see patches of the original forest before fire came through and the leatherwood took over.
    7 December 2011
  • madpom madpom Oldgoat: Do you know is this the 'original' - i.e. pre-human-occupation -vegetation type here, or the result of clearing of bush?
    7 December 2011
  • OldGoat OldGoat This "bit" of leatherwood is the largest expanse of this type of vegetation to be found in New Zealand (25km long ,i believe and very wide.)
    6 December 2011
ID 7528

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Added 4 December 2011 by madpom. No revisions.


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