Pittosporum, Kohuhu, Nigricans Kohuhu, Black Matipo 'Tom Thumb'

Pittosporum tenuifolium

Family: Pittosporaceae
Genus: Pittosporum (pit-oh-SPOR-um) (Info)
Species: tenuifolium (ten-yoo-ih-FOH-lee-um) (Info)
Cultivar: Tom Thumb



Foliage Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Dark Purple/Black


Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer


Grown for foliage



Provides winter interest

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us

Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 30, 2011, vossner from Richmond, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

Not rating the plant as negative but rather my experience growing it. I tried 6 plants, count them: six, and they did not make it. Don't know if it was our unusually harsh summer in 2011 or what. I was heartbroken. The plants came from overseas and looked good upon receipt; however, they were enroute for 5 weeks ea. time. That could have also been a factor.


On Dec 17, 2005, wallaby1 from Lincoln
United Kingdom (Zone 8a) wrote:

I bought this from Travena Cross nursery, UK. It was a good sized plant, but still quite young, planted in present spot in 2001 after a year in a pot. It is in a position which gets no sun in winter, and has been through quite hard frosts to at least -9C; being out of the sun when freezing it doesn't thaw often in the day time. This has not done it any harm at all, it was said to be hardy to -6C, but is in a free draining soil.

The growth has been quite quick for a dwarf shrub, and I have a clematis Piilu climbing through it, an amazing sight. They are perfectly matched for colour, and the growth of the clematis is slow and ideally suited.


On Aug 23, 2002, Baa wrote:

Tom Thumb is a dwarf cultivar of P. tenuifolium and forms a low growing shrub. It's had the high honour of the RHS Award of Garden Merit.

The young leaves start out as a light green and turn dark bronze/purple with age.

It's best grown in full sun for colour.