Clianthus puniceus, kakabeak

Seed banking kakabeak

Emma Bodley - June 2015

One way that Auckland Botanic Gardens achieves our conservation objectives is by banking seed in the Margot Forde National Seed Bank, held in Palmerston North. We recently made our first contribution to the seed bank by collecting seed of Clianthus puniceus, kakabeak. Because there is only one plant left in the wild, our seed orchard of kakabeak with known provenance information is suitable to collect from. We hold all the relevant information from the original collections of kakabeak which the Department of Conservation made in 1997 on an offshore island in the Kaipara Harbour.

Emma collecting seed.jpg

Emma collecting seed from Clianthus puniceus. 

We had to collect approximately 10,000 seeds to ensure that we collected a high proportion of viable seeds to store for many years, but also have surplus seed for germination tests during the time they are stored. We managed to bank 17,300 seeds which is a great contribution to the seed bank. We provided detailed information as well as herbarium specimens to add to their collection. We hope the make more submissions to the seed bank which link to collections we hold here at the Gardens and to help conserve our native flora.