Marlborough Rock Daisy Pachystegia insignis
Marlborough Online Ltd.
Unlike many other of Marlborough's most spectacular plants the rock daisy is common throughout eastern parts of Marlborough. It is most plentiful along the Kaikoura coast where it can be seen growing off many of the bluffs. Pachystegia have large dark green glossy leaves clothed in a thick tormentum underneath. In most varieties this is white but on a recently discovered form, Pachystegia rufra it is reddish brown.Rock daisy will grow to a shrub 1m high but usually in its natural state only grows to 50 cm. In Summer the plant becomes covered in large white flowers with yellow florets in the centre.
Although a popular garden plant Pachystegia insignis is often suseptable to root disease so must be grown in full sun in sharply drained soil. It can withstand substantial drought but does better with adequate water. Plants will grow in limey soil and are salt and frost resistant but resent high nitrogen content fertiliser.