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Trip Report – Mt Kaukau (445 m) and Te Wharangi ridge to south

Trip Report – 1 April 2017 :   Mt Kaukau (445 m) and Te Wharangi ridge to south

Vegetation on the ridge is low, wind-shorn scrub, previously pasture.   We started from the TV mast on Kaukau, having driven up the access road in low cloud, which lifted late morning, aided by a strong northerly.   The group botanised mostly along the ridge, with one diversion off the side into a relatively sheltered gully.   The low, wind-shorn scrub comprised mostly Coprosma rhamnoides and Raukaua anomalus, often growing together, and usually with the Coprosma to windward.   There was also a fair amount of gorse and Darwin’s barberry.   Closer inspection under the shrub cover revealed a surprising variety of herbs and ferns, and a less surprising selection of weeds.   Highlights were large, spreading, but low plants of Lophomyrtus bullata, several species of Hymenophyllum including H. minimum, a number of climbers including Clematis forsteri, Metrosideros fulgens and M. diffusa, Rubus cissoides agg., Muehlenbeckia complexa and Parsonsia heterophylla.

Participants : Gavin Dench, Carolyn Dimattina, Bryan Halliday, Chris Hopkins, Alison Lane, Rodney Lewington, Pat McLean, Richard Parfitt, Leon Perrie, Sunita Singh, Lara Shepherd, Darea Sherratt and co-leaders Jane Humble and Eleanor Burton.

We thank Liz and John Hume for permission to use the access road across their property, and Pat Enright for the species list.


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