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Vitex lucens, commonly known as Puriri, is a native tree species found in New Zealand is well-known for its large and attractive evergreen leaves, as well as its beautiful flowers and berries.



  • Growth Habit: Puriri is a large evergreen tree that can reach heights of up to 20 meters or more. It has a spreading and dense canopy, making it a substantial presence in the landscape.
  • Leaves: The leaves of Vitex lucens are glossy, dark green, and leathery in texture. They are large, oval-shaped, and typically measure around 15 to 25 centimeters in length.
  • Flowers: This tree produces clusters of tubular-shaped flowers that are pink to reddish-purple in color. The flowers are attractive to birds and insects and bloom during the summer months.
  • Berries: After flowering, Puriri develops small, fleshy, dark purple to black berries. These berries are an essential food source for native birds, making the tree valuable for supporting local wildlife.


Growing Conditions:


  • Sunlight: Vitex lucens thrives in full sun to partial shade. It prefers bright light conditions, especially in cooler climates.
  • Soil: This tree prefers well-draining, fertile soils. It can tolerate various soil types, including clay, loam, and sandy soils.
  • Watering: Puriri prefers consistent moisture but is also somewhat drought-tolerant once established. Regular watering during dry spells will help maintain its health and growth.
  • Temperature: This tree is well-adapted to temperate climates and can tolerate light frosts. It is not suitable for extremely cold or freezing temperatures.
  • Maintenance: Vitex lucens is generally low-maintenance. Prune as needed to maintain its shape and remove any dead or damaged branches.


Puriri is a popular tree in New Zealand gardens and landscapes due to its striking appearance, large leaves, and vibrant flowers. Its dense canopy provides excellent shade, making it an ideal choice for large gardens or parks. Additionally, its flowers and berries attract native birds, making it a valuable tree for encouraging biodiversity in the area where it grows. As a native New Zealand plant, it also contributes to the preservation of local ecosystems and supports native wildlife.

Vitex lucens (Puriri)

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