Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

New Zealand: Daisy bush

with 6 comments

Brachyglottis compacta Flowers 5489

When I visited Otari-Wilton’s Bush in Wellington on February 20th, I found this flowering Brachyglottis compacta, a threatened endemic species known as daisy bush or Castlepoint daisy. For more information, you can check out Rainy Side Gardeners (which ironically is in the northwestern part of the United States rather than the northwestern part of New Zealand).

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

May 8, 2015 at 5:29 AM

6 Responses

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  1. I especially like the way the silvery stems, receptacles and leaf-backs are echoed in the silvery edging on the front of the leaves. And it’s nice to know that New Zealand has some DYCs, too.

    When I checked out Otari-Wilton’s bush, I saw it’s also home to the Morepork. Of course I had to check that out, and I found a wonderful photo of the owl that was taken in Blowhard Bush, northwest of Hastings. It’s the most elevated of the reserves, and has a Troglodyte Trail: another reason for a smile. I imagined every sort of explanation for the name “Blowhard Bush,” but the brochure says that Blowhard “got its name from the early coaching days in Hawkes Bay, as horses struggled to cross the inland ranges of Hawkes Bay.”


    May 8, 2015 at 7:15 AM

    • Texas has its (Plebeian) Native Plant Society,


      and thanks to you I now know that New Zealand has its Royal Forest & Bird Protection Society:


      When I came upon this plant it surprised me and seemed out of place in New Zealand, which doesn’t have a lot of DYCs (darn yellow composites), much less native ones. That light grey edging around the leaves struck me as a nice touch, a hint seen from above of what lies underneath in much greater amounts. My guess is that what makes the plant threatened is loss of habitat.

      On the good side, it seemed that in every part of New Zealand I traveled through I encountered a reserve or a national park, so the consciousness of how much has been lost is definitely there. How much of that can be retained or brought back remains to be seen.

      You certainly uncovered a pair of great names. You’ve explained Blowhard Bush, and the 1913 Webster’s Dictionary notes that the morepork is “so named from its cry.” I didn’t make it to Napier/Hastings/Hawke’s Bay on this trip, but not for lack of wanting to go.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 8, 2015 at 7:51 AM

  2. That’s a lovely plant and I would like to have one here in the yard. But, alas, wrong hardiness zone.

    Steve Gingold

    May 9, 2015 at 4:31 PM

    • It’s not at all what I expected to be native in New Zealand, but I’m glad it’s hanging on there.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 9, 2015 at 10:02 PM

  3. I love this photograph. Beautiful play of colors and lines.

    Susan Scheid

    May 17, 2015 at 7:56 PM

    • That’s the way I felt, Susan. Because I’d not seen a lot of native wildflowers so far in New Zealand, these were especially welcome.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 17, 2015 at 8:02 PM

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