Scientific Name:
Carmichaelia muritai (A.W.Purdie) Heenan, New Zealand J. Bot. 36: 56 (1998)
  • Chordospartium muritai A.W.Purdie, New Zealand J. Bot. 23: 157-161 (1985)
The epithet muritai is the Maori word for 'sea breeze' and alludes to the coastal habitat of the plants.
Vernacular Name(s):
Clifford Bay broom

Leafless tree to 5-6 m tall with stout, branching trunk to 25 cm diameter and compact canopy of branchlets, the uppermost erect and the lower ones drooping. Branches stout, ± erect, grey-brown when mature, with relatively smooth bark and conspicuous raised rings at nodes; actively growing branches yellowish-green with brown or grey markings; bark thin and distinctly striate. Branchlets compact, striate, deeply grooved, flat to ± round, to 3.5 mm wide, initially greygreen, later becoming yellow-green, densely hairy in grooves and at nodes of new shoots, but hairs diminishing as branchlets age. Hairs anfractuose, nodose, tomentose. Stipules clasping shoot, 0.5 × 0.4 mm, elongatetriangular, pointed, tomentose on abaxial surface, thinly herbaceous to fleshy at first but soon becoming dry and membranous and eventually completely reduced. Leaves early deciduous, simple, emarginate, alternate, initially folded along midrib but gradually expanding and increasing in size to c. 6 × 5 mm, sparsely hairy on adaxial surface, more densely hairy on abaxial surface; petioles hairy, fleshy, ± cylindric, to 2.5 mm long. Leaves reduced to scales on mature shoots. Flowers c. 4 × 4 mm in simple, lateral, erect, compact racemes up to 7 cm long; racemes solitary on peduncles arising directly at nodes on mature branchlets, or in groups of up to 6 on flowering shoots arising at nodes. Flowering shoots simple or branched, short or elongated, much-flattened, 1-1.5 mm wide, light green, grooved, densely hairy. Peduncles hairy with elongated scales, c. 0.8 mm long, at nodes; pedicels c. 1 mm long, hairy, arising in axils of peduncle scales. Rim and outer surface of calyx tube hairy. Petals whitish with intense purple-violet marking towards base of standard and keel; veins of all petals violetcoloured; standard suborbicular, longer than wings, with margins refiexed; wings ± dolabriform, obtuse; ovary pubescent; style glabrous; stigma glabrous; ovules 7-10. Developing pod green, with the complete, but withered, style often long-persistent or otherwise breaking off near its base leaving a stout, blunt, slightly upturned beak c. 1 mm long; mature pod stramineous, densely hairy, obliquely obovate, 3.5 × 1.8 mm including beak; the withered calyx, corolla and stamens remaining long-attached to the pod; seeds usually 1 per pod, yellow-green, ± reniform, 1.5 × 1 mm.

[Reproduced from Purdie with minor modifications (1985, New Zealand J. Bot. 23: 157-161) with permission from The Royal Society of New Zealand.]

Indigenous (Endemic)
de Lange, P.J.; Norton, D.A.; Courtney, S.P.; Heenan, P.B.; Barkla, J.W.; Cameron, E.K.; Hitchmough, R.; Townsend, A.J. 2009: Threatened and uncommon plants of New Zealand (2008 revision). New Zealand Journal of Botany 47: 61–96. [Nationally Endangered]
de Lange, P.J.; Norton, D.A.; Heenan, P.B.; Courtney, S.P.; Molloy, B.P.J.; Ogle, C.C.; Rance, B.D. 2004: Threatened and uncommon plants of New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Botany 42(1): 45–76.
de Lange, P.J.; Rolfe, J.R.; Barkla J.W.; Courtney, S.P.; Champion, P.D.; Perrie, L.R.; Beadel, S.N.; Ford, K.A.; Breitwieser, I.; Schönberger, I.; Hindmarsh-Walls, R.; Heenan, P.B.; Ladley, K. 2018: Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2017. New Zealand Threat Classification Series. No. 22. [Nationally Endangered]
de Lange, P.J.; Rolfe, J.R.; Champion, P.D.; Courtney, S.P.; Heenan, P.B.; Barkla, J.W.; Cameron, E.K.; Norton, D.A.; Hitchmough, R.A. 2013: Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012. New Zealand Threat Classification Series 3. Department of Conservation, Wellington. [Nationally Endangered]
Heenan, P.B. 1995: Typification of names in Carmichaelia, Chordospartium, Corallospartium, and Notospartium (Fabaceae - Galegeae) from New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Botany 33: 439–454. [as Chordospartium muritai A.W.Purdie]
Heenan, P.B. 1998: An emended circumscription of Carmichaelia, with new combinations, a key, and notes on hybrids. New Zealand Journal of Botany 36(1): 53–63.
Purdie, A.W. 1985: Chordospartium muritai (Papilionaceae) a rare new species of New Zealand tree broom. New Zealand Journal of Botany 23: 157–161.