Sand coprosma

Sand coprosma


Sand coprosma (coprosma acerosa) Tātaraheke

Where does it grow?

It grows mainly in the mid dunes throughout NZ. It is reasonably common in the mid-dunes at Castlecliff.

What does it look like?

It is a small. sprawling shrub reaching to about 2m and often forming springy patches up to 2 m across. The leaves are very small, pointed and are an orange brown colour. The female plant produces small solitary greenish flowers which are followed in summer with pale blue translucent fruits that are 4-8 mm long.

The male plant has very small tubular shaped flowers. It needs two sexes to propogate.

Coprosma acerosa Whitiau Scientific Reserve. Photo supplied by Colin Olge

Sand coprosma
Sand coprosma. Photo supplied by Colin Olge

Why is it important to Castlecliff beach?

It is an effective sand catcher in parts of the dunes that are more protected from high winds and storms.  It is very hardy and can tolerate poor soil but it does not like any competition.  Coast care are beginning to plant the sand coprosma but care has to be taken as to where to plant it so it does not have to compete with dominant plants.