I recently spent a week on Norfolk Island collecting ferns. One non-fern plant I was particularly keen to see was harakeke (Phormium tenax), on which I’ve done recent genetic work. On Norfolk Island it is known as flax, so I’ll use that name here. What I hadn’t appreciated before the trip was the significance of flax to the settlement of Norfolk Island.
Three Te Papa botanists recently visited Norfolk Island together with colleagues from the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. Their purpose was to collect ferns for research. Curator of Botany Leon Perrie introduces the significance of Norfolk Island’s ferns. Our research programme investigating the relationships and naming of Aotearoa New Zealand’s ferns
Three of our botanists recently spent a week on Norfolk Island collecting ferns with colleagues from the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. Our fern findings will be detailed in a future blog post but here we discuss interesting flowering plants that we saw – some of which were very familiar to us as New Zealanders but others were completely new!