Hebe buxifolia (Benth.) Ckn. & Allan

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Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Hebe buxifolia' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/hebe/hebe-buxifolia/). Accessed 2024-06-18.



  • Veronica buxifolia Benth.


(pl. apices) Tip. apical At the apex.
Angle between the upper side of a leaf and the stem.
Immature shoot protected by scales that develops into leaves and/or flowers.
Unbranched inflorescence with lateral flowers the pedicels of which are of different lengths making the inflorescence appear flat-topped.
With an unbroken margin.
Lacking hairs smooth. glabrescent Becoming hairless.
Plant originating from the cross-fertilisation of genetically distinct individuals (e.g. two species or two subspecies).
(sect.) Subdivision of a genus.
Recess between two lobes or teeth on leaf margin.


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Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Hebe buxifolia' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/hebe/hebe-buxifolia/). Accessed 2024-06-18.

A neat shrub 2 to 5 ft high, with erect branches; young shoots pale green, glabrous, except for a thin strip of down reaching from the axil of one leaf to the opening between the pair next above it; leaf-bud with a pronounced sinus. Leaves in four superposed rows, 13 to 12 in. long, 316 to 14 in. wide, oblong inclined to obovate, pointed, rounded at the base, dark glossy green, perfectly glabrous, covered with minute dots beneath; stalk about 112 in. long, dilated where it joins the stem and slightly hairy there. Flowers white, 14 to 13 in. across, produced in June and July at and near the apex of the shoots in closely packed clusters, 12 to 1 in. long, which are often branched and collectively form a corymb, 1 to 2 in. across, the stalks minutely downy. Sepals narrow oblong, rounded at the end, edged with minute hairs; seed-vessel about twice as long, glabrous.

Native of the North and South Islands of New Zealand. The plant in cultivation under this name and described above is very distinct in general appearance from native grown specimens, which have the leaves much more densely arranged on the stem, and less distinctly stalked. But in all essential particulars they appear to be the same. Probably the differences are due to the different environment of cultivated plants. It reaches up to 4,000 ft altitude in New Zealand, and is one of the hardiest members of this group. It flowers annually, but not freely.

H. buxifolia is very closely allied to, and perhaps not specifically different from:

H. odora (Hook. f.) Ckn. Veronica odora Hook. f. – This species, which owes its specific epithet to its jasmine-like scent, was described by the younger Hooker from specimens collected in the Auckland Islands, which lie between the South Island of New Zealand and Antarctica. Bentham, who described Hebe buxifolia from specimens collected in the North Island of New Zealand, was evidently aware that it was closely allied to Hooker’s species, and according to Dr Lucy Moore there is no reliable difference by which they can be separated except perhaps that in H. odora the margins are ‘minutely crenulated’, not entire as in H. buxifolia. If the two species were to be united, it would be under the name H. odora.

For another member of this complex, see H. anomala.

From the Supplement (Vol. V)

Graham Hutchins has pointed out that the plant known in gardens as H. buxifolia ‘Nana’ is a hybrid, which he has renamed ‘Baby Marie’; see the section on garden hybrids in this supplement.

† H. pauciramosa (Ckn. & Allan) L. B. Moore H. buxifolia var. pauciramosa Ckn. & Allan – Closely allied to H. buxifolia and H. odora, but making a small, erect shrub to about 2 ft high.