History Trail
2   Pohutukawa Tree
 
In the Williams House front garden of is a fine example of a native pohutukawa tree, (Metrosideros excelsa). This tree is often referred to as New Zealand’s Christmas Tree due to the crimson flowers that appear in December.
 
Pohutukawa belongs to the myrtle family that includes eucalypts, which are the main natural foods of the Australian brushtail possum. Unfortunately this introduced animal to New Zealand, therefore feeds on pohutukawa. Due to their voracious appetite and lack of predators opossums destroy a number of trees.