NZ Nurseries

Southern Rata


A beautiful red Christmas flower, the Southern Rata is a spreading slow growing evergreen that can live up to 500 years. Trims well and suits high rain fall. It grows although New Zealand, but more predominant in the South Island. Currently under threat due to Myrtle Rust and Possums.

SKU: N/A Category: Tag:

Common Name: Southern Rata

Scientific Name: Metrosideros umbellata 

Height at Maturity: 10-15 meters

Time to Maturity: 15 years +

Growth Rate: Slow

Habitat: Suited to a colder climate, it can be quite hardy once established. Requires a moist environment. It is tolerant of poor soils and dry periods, frost (once established) and coastal environments.

Domesticated Uses: The New Zealand Christmas Tree, Beautiful tree in the garden.

Medicinal Uses: Historically The bark could be made into a lotion or poultice, and the flower nectar was used for sore throats.

Forest Uses: Occurs on rocky sloops and river gorges at altitudes up to 760m in Beach and Podocarp Forests. Good food source for native creatures. It is considered to be an ancient species from which Northern Rata and Pohutukawa evolved.

Flowering: November to January

Fruiting/Nectar: Mid to late summer

Birds Life:  The Tui, Bellbird, Kākā as well as bats and lizards feed on the nectar. It is also good source for Honey

Planting Instructions: As they are slow growing and fragile helps to plant a more established tree.

Pot Size

50mm pot, 2.5 Litre Pot

Seed Source

Banks Peninsula, Tasman

Tree Location


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