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Heliconia, also popularly known as lobster-claw, wild plantain or false bird-of-paradise, is a beautiful flower with multi-color bracts and varied flower structure. Heliconias are native to the tropical Americas and the Pacific Ocean islands west to Indonesia. Heliconia, formerly included in the family Musaceae, is now the only genus under Heliconiaceae.
The kōwhai is one of the best known native trees in New Zealand and it’s our unofficial national flower. They are best known for their brilliant yellow flowers that appear in profusion in Spring and stand out among the forest greenery. We love to have kōwhai in our gardens. Kōwhai imagery is popular in art works and has been used on postage stamps and coins.
The pohutukawa tree (Metrosideros excelsa) with its crimson flower has become an established part of the New Zealand Christmas tradition. This iconic Kiwi Christmas tree, which often features on greeting cards and in poems and songs, has become an important symbol for New Zealanders at home and abroad.