Scientific Name:
Astelia Banks & Sol. ex R.Br., Prodr. Fl. Nov. Holland. 291 (1810)
  • = Funckia Muhl. ex Willd. (1808)
  • = Hamelinia A.Rich., Essai Fl. Nouv.-Zél., 158 (1832)
  • = Collospermum Skottsb., Kongl. Svenska Vetenskapsakad. Handl. 14: 72 (1934)
Type Taxon:
Astelia alpina Banks & Sol. ex R. Br.
Vernacular Name(s):
Mauri; Mauri kura; Whara

Dioec. Infl. a terminal panicle, sts much reduced, on a lfless simple peduncle; spathes often large and foliaceous, each subtending a simple raceme (occ. represented by a single fl.) or a branched sub-infl. of 2–5 or more racemes; bracteoles membr., us. adnate to short pedicels; fls small, us. ∞, ♂ us. larger than ♀. Per. membr. to fleshy, tube very short to well developed, lobes triangular to strap-shaped. Stamens in ♂ < tepals, anthers dorsifixed, mobile; in ♀ minute with flat empty anthers. Ovary superior, 1- or 3-locular; placentae parietal or axile and almost apical; ovules few to many, smaller in ♂ but us. identifiable; style short and thick; stigmatic surfaces 3, well separated or confluent; nectaries 3, slit-like, below and between the stigmatic surfaces. Fr. a berry. Seeds black, ± glossy, sts associated with funicular hairs but not coated by them. Tufted herbs, epiphytic or terrestrial, characterised by peculiar indumentum of scales. Stems short, us. hidden. Lvs 3-ranked, linear to ensiform, us. keeled; sheath broad, closed; nerves ∞, variously incrassate.

[From: Moore and Edgar (1970) Flora of New Zealand. Volume 2.]

Indigenous (Non-endemic)
Number of species in New Zealand within Astelia Banks & Sol. ex R.Br.
Indigenous (Endemic)15
Birch, J.L. 2015: A revision of infrageneric classification in Astelia Banks & Sol. ex R.Br. (Asteliaceae). PhytoKeys 52: 105–132.
Brown, R. 1810: Prodromus Florae Novae Hollandiae et Insulae Van-Diemen. Johnson, London.
Mabberley, D.J. 2008: Mabberley's plant book, a portable dictionary of plants, their classification and uses. Edition 3. Cambridge University Press.
Richard, A. 1832: Essai d'une Flore de la Nouvelle Zélande. In: Dumont d'Urville, J. Voyage de découvertes de l'Astrolabe. Botanique. Tastu, Paris.
Skottsberg, C.J.F. 1934: Kongl. Svenska Vetenskapsakad. Handl. ser. 3. 14(2)