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Forest Vines to Snow Tussocks: The Story of New Zealand Plants



In wetter places areas of this type of vegetation formed a mosaic with bog forest and were known as 'clears' by the settlers. The dominant species is the bamboo-rush, Sporadanthus traversii, which forms a deep and fibrous peat. This genus with its single species is restricted to New Zealand and despite the inroads of farming is still to be found locally in the Waikato Basin of the North Island as well as the Chathams.

In the wettest hollows of the bogs Sphagnum moss predominates and shrubs of Dracophyllum scoparium and the purple-flowered Olearia semi-dentata are scattered throughout. Most of the 'clears' have been completely altered by repeated burning.

A low shrubbery dominated by the endemic Styphelia robusta occupies dry ridges in the peatlands of the southern tableland.