‘Little alien’ unusual discovery in garden

Tuesday December 08, 2015 Written by Published in Environment
Kura Metuariki shows off her unusual plant discovery. 15120302 Kura Metuariki shows off her unusual plant discovery. 15120302

A strange and unusual extension to a local tiare taina tree has been discovered on the west side of the island by a local Rutaki resident.


With long claw-like branches bundled together like some weird character from a Lord of the Rings movie, Kura Metuariki describes its likeness to a Japanese bonsai tree and has called her discovery, “my little alien.”

“Personally, I have never seen this type of branch on a tiare taina tree, but I noticed it this morning when I was picking flowers, it was very unusual” Metuariki wrote to CI News last week.

Completely surprised by her discovery, she was somewhat confused and at the same time excited at what she believed to be the rarity of the branch.

“It had small branches at the beginning of the claws, it was amazing. There were flowers growing everywhere on the tree except on this branch,” said Metuariki.

The branch was found on a tiare taina tree owned by Papa Rouru Metuariki and it was planted by his late wife, Mama Marae Metuariki, who had a particular  love for flowers.

It was through her passion for flowers that before her death, she, planted a number of tiare taina plants around her land so that she could happily make her eis, use her flowers as decoration ornaments for functions and not forgetting that finishing touch – a fresh flower behind her ear every day.

“Planting more tiare taina trees was one of the best things my family and I have ever done, and with mum continuously encouraging us to plant more and more over the years for the benefit of our futures. It has definitely achieved that for us over the years.

“It has also been special to me, as when I look at all the plants it’s like I’m looking at my mum,” says Metuariki.             - Release/SM 

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