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Podocarpus totara - G.Benn. ex D.Don.
                 
Common Name Totara
Family Podocarpaceae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards Superficially similar to Taxus species, but this plant is definitely not poisonous[200].
Habitats Lowland, montane and sub-alpine forest on North, South and Stewart Islands[44].
Range New Zealand.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Half Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

Summary

Podocarpus totara Totara


Podocarpus totara Totara
   
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of cone
Podocarpus totara is an evergreen Tree growing to 30 m (98ft 5in) at a slow rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 9. It is in leaf 12-Jan, and the seeds ripen in October. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required) and are pollinated by Wind.The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid and neutral soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms
P. hallii.

Habitats
Woodland Garden Canopy;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Fruit.
Edible Uses:

Fruit - raw or cooked[2, 105, 153, 183]. Sweet and juicy but there is a hint of turpentine in its flavour, especially if it is not fully ripe[173]. The fruit is about 6mm in diameter[200].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.



None known
Other Uses
Wood.

Wood - straight grained, reddish, very durable lasting a long time in water, but it can be brittle. Used for construction work and cabinet making[1, 11, 46, 61, 128].
Cultivation details
Prefers a rich moist non-alkaline soil[167]. This species is only hardy in the milder areas of Britain. Plants have succeeded in Suffolk and Argyll as well as in southern and western Britain but it is only in Cornwall and Ireland that plants achieve the stature of trees[81, 185]. A tree at Trebah gardens in Cornwall was 16 metres tall in 1959[185]. Plants are fairly slow growing with an average increase in height around 20cm a year in Cornwall[185]. Cultivated as a timber tree in New Zealand[1]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[200]. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.
Propagation
The seed can be sown at any time of the year in a sandy soil in a warm greenhouse, though it is probably best sown as soon as it is ripe[1]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe terminal shoots, 5 - 10cm long, July/August in a frame[78].
Other Names
Found In
Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :
Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Nageia nagiNagi, Nagi Podocarpus, Broadleaf Podocarpus10
Podocarpus alpinusTasmanian Podocarp20
Podocarpus elatusAustralian Plum20
Podocarpus lawrencei 20
Podocarpus macrophyllusKusamaki, Yew plum pine, Buddhist Pine, Chinese Podocarpus, Chinese Yew Pine, Japanese Yew, Souther21
Podocarpus neriifoliusOleander Podocarp, Brown Pine22
Podocarpus nivalisAlpine Totara30
Podocarpus nubigenusChilean Podocarp20
Podocarpus salignusWillowleaf Podocarp20
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Expert comment
 
Author
G.Benn. ex D.Don.
Botanical References
1144200
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
 
Elizabeth H.
Andrew Arlidge Thu Aug 7 2008
Readseal are marketing a toothpaste containing a totara extract which they claim fights bacteria which cause dental caries.

Readseal Possible medicinal use of Totara

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Subject : Podocarpus totara  

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