Kowhai

This stunning yellow blossom is widely regarded as the country’s national flower. This plant has a lot to share for us Māori. It is particularly known for being a clear marker of the beginning of spring.

Kōwhai flowers were traditionally used by us Māori to make a yellow dye. Kōwhai tree bark was also used to treat injuries while kōwhai ashes were also incorporated in ringworm treatments.

Māori ancestors used to plant kōwhai trees around old settlement sites and sacred places. It is believed that plantings in some places like Wellington were the direct result of Māori tribal invasion and disputes.

 

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