Myoporum laetum - G.Forst.
Common Name Ngaio, Ngaio tree, Mousehole Tree
Family Myoporaceae
USDA hardiness 9-11
Known Hazards All parts of the plant contain a liver toxin[173].
Habitats Usually found by the coast, often to the high tide mark[128], it is also found in lowland forests on North, South and Chatham Islands south to latitude 46°s[44].
Range New Zealand.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating  
Half Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun

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Bloom Color: White. Main Bloom Time: Early spring, Late winter, Mid spring. Form: Rounded.

Myoporum laetum Ngaio, Ngaio tree, Mousehole Tree
Myoporum laetum Ngaio, Ngaio tree, Mousehole Tree
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of shrub
Myoporum laetum is an evergreen Shrub growing to 6 m (19ft) by 3 m (9ft) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 9. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from May to June. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in saline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.


Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; South Wall. By. West Wall. By.
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Fruit.
Edible Uses:

Fruit - raw or cooked[153, 177]. The fruit is about 6 - 9mm in diameter[200]. Some caution is advised, see notes above on possible toxicity.
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.

Odontalgic;  Vulnerary.

Odontalgic, vulnerary. The bark is used to treat ulcers[61].


Other Uses

A decoction of the leaves is used as an insect repellent[128]. It is effective against mosquitoes[245].
Cultivation details
Landscape Uses:Border, Espalier, Screen, Standard, Specimen, Woodland garden. Easily grown in most soils[167] so long as they are well-drained[188]. Succeeds in dry soils[200] and in poor soils[188]. Very resistant to maritime exposure and salt spray[166]. This species is not very hardy in mainland Britain, it succeeds outdoors on the Scilly Isles[1] but usually requires greenhouse protection elsewhere[1]. Plants flower freely in Cornish gardens[1, 59]. Plants do not tolerate temperatures below 0°c[166]. The leaves emit a resinous smell when bruised[245]. The flowers are also fragrant[245]. Special Features:Not North American native, Invasive, Attractive flowers or blooms.
Seed - sow spring in a greenhouse. 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. Consider giving the plants some protection from the cold for their first few winters outdoors. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 10cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Pot up in the autumn. Good percentage[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


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Botanical References
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
S Frost   Wed Feb 26 02:59:01 2003
Is it possible for the fruit of this plant, M. Laetum to eat the paint of off a car? Please let me know, thank you very much, [email protected]
lesley mcarthur   Sun Mar 23 06:04:37 2003
Does this plant contribute to allergic reactions or asthma?
hiba   Thu Apr 10 16:15:16 2003

Link: myoporum laetum forst active constituent

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Subject : Myoporum laetum  

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