Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Kaka Beak, Kowhai Ngutu Kaka
Clianthus puniceus 'Roseus'

Family: Papilionaceae (pa-pil-ee-uh-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Clianthus (klih-AN-thus) (Info)
Species: puniceus (pun-IK-ee-us) (Info)
Cultivar: Roseus

7 members have or want this plant for trade.

Vines and Climbers

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

Not Applicable

Sun Exposure:
Unknown - Tell us

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Unknown - Tell us


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
Scarify seed before sowing

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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By wallaby1
Thumbnail #1 of Clianthus puniceus by wallaby1

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2 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive jusamby On Apr 26, 2006, jusamby from Wallingford, PA wrote:

I have to say this has to be the best plant I have ever grown. It was given to me as a tiny wee thing, that I thought would never survive (by the real estate agent that my boyfriend bought his house from.)

The garden would make you want to cry ! Beautiful natives were being overrun by weeds etc... Anyway ..I made a space for the little thing that I knew was special in NZ history and gardening, and went about business of clearing the rest of the property. Four years later when we were had to move because of my husband job, this wonderful, overgrown monster was clearly in its element in a moist sunny location.

This is an absolutely wonderful species, that if you ever come across, please, plant! It will reward you many times over. The seed pods have the ability to germinate 10, 20 or 30 years (in the right location). It can be grown as a climber, or a tree. But is a very special and under-appreciated species

Positive koolkatken On Jan 25, 2006, koolkatken from Auckland
New Zealand wrote:

Beautiful plant. The flowers are great and quite unique. Live here in Auck., NZ so I suppose it is the most suitable climate. I would think it likes fairly mild winters (no or little frost), and not too hot summers and plenty of water. Don't know if this helps though... cheers.

Neutral wallaby1 On Dec 5, 2005, wallaby1 from Lincoln
United Kingdom (Zone 8a) wrote:

I wasn't sure if I should give this postive, so neutral for now. I may change my view, as I bought the seed (I think in 2001) from Norfields, UK. Sown after scarifying (just a slight chip or sandpapering) in a propagator to start. I had a very good germination rate and, at first, they seemed to do well.

The problem seems to be that they possibly don't like to be kept in a cold greenhouse overwinter, as each winter they seemed to go backwards. I lost most, the main problem being the roots deteriorating. I had one germinate in a pot with a camellia which I am sure I repotted in spring or summer 2003, and as I had reused the original compost it obviously liked to be outside, and germinated 2 years later.

This is doing well, and the roots are a little bared, not helped by the wind blowing the pot over. I feel that it prefers this, and growing amongst other roots could suit it, keeping its roots from rotting by using excess water. The remaining two plants I have repotted and left them outside, they are both doing well for now.

This is said to be rare in the wild, but found often in cultivation, and is a New Zealand native. The flowers are not the typical puniceus type, but a long talon-like claw, and are red, hanging in bunches held well clear of the plant. It is said to be a sprawling climber. Mine has branched, and so far, has remained evergreen. I have high hopes of it flowering. Zone 8a UK


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Fairfield, California

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