Disphyma papillatum

  • Near Owenga, Chatham Island
  • Near Owenga, Chatham Island
  • Near Owenga, Chatham Island
  • Near Owenga, Chatham Island
  • Disphyma papillatum
  • Disphyma papillatum
  • Disphyma papillatum fruits
  • Disphyma papillatum
  • Disphyma papillatum
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Disphyma papillatum


Disphyma: Two-nodule

Common Name(s)

Chatham Island ice plant

Current Threat Status

2012 - At Risk - Naturally Uncommon

Previous Threat Status

2009 - At Risk - Naturally Uncommon
2004 - Range Restricted


2012 - IE, RR
2009 - IE


Disphyma papillatum Chinnock





Flora Category

Vascular - Native


None - was once considered part of the normal variation exhibited by D. australe


Endemic: Chatham Islands: Rekohu (Chatham), Rangiuaria (Pitt), Rangatira (South East), Mangere, Little Mangere, Rabbit, Castle, Forty Fours, Star Keys, Sisters and Western Reef


Abundant on coastal rocks, cliffs and gravels, often in very exposed, inhospitable sites.


Trailing, succulent herb. Stem flattened, 2-angled, glabrous. Leaves 3-angled, acute, tapering to connate base, 4-30 × 5-6 mm; margins papillate. Flowers 20-40 mm diameter. Petals uniformly white, pink, dark blue or purple, in 3-5 rows, 10-30 mm long. Stamens 5-6 mm long; inner filaments hairy at base. Stigmas 5(-6). Capsule valves with widely divergent expanding keels; placental tubercle present, 2-lobed or reduced to a ridge. Seeds yellowish brown to brown, obovoid, distinctly papillate, c.1 mm long.

Similar Taxa

Distinguished from the other New Zealand species by the papillate rather than smooth, 2-angular rather than terete stems, and distinctly papillate rather than rugose or smooth seeds.


July - May

Main Flower Colour

Red / Pink

Other Flower Colour



Present throughout the year

Propagation Technique

Easy from rooted pieces and fresh seed. Does best in full sun, within a damp, well drained and fertile soil


Not Threatened: Abundant on coastal cliffs, rock stacks, cobble beaches, on offshore islands, and around petrel burrows in open coastal forest.

Chromosome No.

2n = 36

Endemic Taxon


Endemic Genus


Endemic Family


References and further reading

Webb, C. J.; Sykes, W. R.; Garnock-Jones, P. J. 1988: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. IV. Naturalised Pteridophytes, Gymnosperms, Dicotyledons. 4. Christchurch, New Zealand, Botany Division, D.S.I.R.

Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285-309

This page last updated on 24 Jul 2014

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