Marlborough Weeping Broom Chordospartium stevensonii
Last Modified: 1-2-2020 8:00
Chordospartium stevensonii is an endemic tree broom with pink flowers, found naturally only in eastern Marlborough. At present the total wild population numbers only a few hundred trees with the largest population at high altitude in the Seaward Kaikoura Range and a smaller one in the Awatere Valley. All wild populations are now protected by law but the species has not made a great recovery so is still classified as vunerable.
The weeping broom is becoming increasingly popular in gardens around the world because of its unusual form and magnificent floral display in summer. In the wild it grows to 8 metres high with a trunk up to 30 cm thick topped by a massive canopy of weeping leefless branchlets. Mature branches are are usually upright, grey and ringed. In December large hanging clusters of 10 mm mauve flowers appear, completely smothering the tree followed by small pods containing up to three seeds.
In the garden the weeping broom will grow easily in any well drained soil in full sun. It is very slow growing and may take many years before flowering but it is well worth the wait. It can be propagated from cuttings or fresh seeds.