Plagianthus divaricatus | Mākaka

Drainage:DampVery WetWell DrainedWet
Height Range:2
Site Conditions:CoastalExposedFrost TolerantHeavy SoilLoamy SoilSaltySandy SoilWindy
Spread Range:1.5
Sunlight:Full Sun
Features:EvergreenSuitable for Revegetation SpeciesSuitable for RiparianSuitable for Shelter


Plagianthus divaricatus is a small endemic shrub forming thickets of intertwined stems. Found in sheltered coastal shorelines throughout New Zealand, in areas with salt swamp, sandy banks and throughout estuaries. It can be found in association with (but not limited to) Coprosma propinqua, Muehlenbeckia complexa, Cyperus ustulatus, and Phormium tenax. For more information about coastal salt marsh plant communities, we recommend DOC’s publication Native Plant Communities of the Canterbury Plains.

Plagianthus divaricatus is a dense tangled shrub with silvery stems and small elongated green leaves. The tiny spoon-shaped leaves are inconspicuous and deciduous. It grows up to 3m tall. During spring, Plagianthus divaricatus develops masses of small, drooping, cream, strong vanilla-scented 5 petaled flowers. The flowers are followed by 5mm wide fruit capsules containing small seeds. The seeds are dispersed by floating on water. The seed capsules are attractive to native birds.

As its common name suggests, it is salt and wet tolerant. As with P. regius, it has a juvenile and adult form where the leaves become larger as it grows. Used as a coastal wetland and restoration plant. Also great as a trimmed hedge or low shelter. Hardy shrub.

For additional photos, visit Alan Jolliffe’s horticulture blog here.

Additional information


, , ,


Height Range

Site Conditions

, , , , , , ,

Spread Range



, , ,