Hardy Palm and Subtropical Board
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the many metrosideros...
Posted by George in Bandon Oregon on 8/30/2017, 12:01 pm, in reply to "Re: Metrosideros."
Edited by George in Bandon Oregon on 8/31/2017, 1:24 am
it's worthwhile noting that there are a number of metrosideros species spread about the south pacific (Hawaii has several species including m. polymorpha, BTW). the one in your picture is most likely m. excelsa which is mainly a coastal species of the milder more subtropical parts of New Zealand (especially the north island) and is in fact not hardy even in parts of that rather mild country. the species Brian was referring to is m. umbellata with a distribution extending into the southern cooler more "temperate" parts of the south island (even near glaciers in some places!!!) and it possibly the species with at least better frost hardiness than m. excelsa. FWIW, cold tolerance is not necessarily connected with small size---the (relatively) hardier m. umbellata can reach 50' under optimal conditions though it is indeed generally a slower grower (and much slower to reach flowering) than it's more tender sister species
no doubt harsher conditions (warmer, drier) of more inland (but still relatively mild) areas around the S.F. bay area may have some effect on the size and vigor of metrosideros planted there.
the upper southern oregon coast
USDA zone 9a (Sunset zone 5)
DRY cool summers and WET cool winters
grow eucalyptus, banksias, telopeas, grevilleas, bottlebrush, mexican pines and oaks