Ascarina Lucida which is also known as Hutu is a species of small tree belonging to the family of Chloranthaceae.
Overview of Ascarina Lucida
• It is endemic to New Zealand.
• It is common on the West Coast and Nelson regions of the South Island.
• It is rarely found in the North Island.
• Ascarina lucida is the only member of its genus is monoecious and is found in New Zealand.
• It is found above 245m.
• Glabrous gynodioecious tree can grow up to a height of 15 m tall.
• Trunk measures up to 500 mm diameter.
• Bark is grayish-white in color.
• Branchlets are slender, striate and initially pale green.
• The color matures to dark green to emerald green.
• Interpetiolar stipules are conspicuous.
• They comprise of 3 1.2-2.6 mm long pale pink to red filaments.
• Petioles are up to 15-20 mm long.
• Inflorescences spicate and comprises of female or mixed male and female spikes on separated trees.
• Branches are up to 30 mm long.
• Flowers are alternate, sessile and subtended.
• Male flowers have one anther and are about 2.0-3.0 mm long.
• Female flower are smaller and solitary.
• Fruit is about 3.0-2.0 mm long.
• They are broadly ovoid and fleshy.
• They are white and maroon-blotched or maroon-striped.
• FLOWERING: July – December
• MAIN FLOWER COLOR: Green
• OTHER FLOWER COLOR: Red / Pink
• FRUITING: January – August
• CHROMOSOME NO.: 2n = 26
Scientific classification of Ascarina Lucida
• Kingdom: Plantae
• (unranked): Angiosperms
• Order: Chloranthales
• Family: Chloranthaceae
• Genus: Ascarina
• Species: A. lucida
Growing/Caring conditions of Ascarina Lucida
• Plant in moisture-retentive area or location.
• It can be grown freely draining soil in a sheltered, shady position.
• This plant can be easily propagated from cuttings and fresh seed.
• They are rather cold sensitive.
• Given time this variety can form a very large, spreading tree under ideal conditions.
The following are the requirements of the plant:
• The soil types that fit this plant are Clay, Loamy or Sandy.
• The Soil drainage system that fits the plant are Well-drained or Moist but well-drained.
• The Soil pH that fit the plant is acid or Neutral.
• The light requirements that fit the plant are Partial Shade to Full Shade.
• The plant needs an exposure of being sheltered .
• The hardy requirements that fit the plant are tender in frost.