Also known as Wineberry. It can be classified as a deciduous shrub or small tree and can grow to 9m. Its serrated leaves are broad and greenish in colour but can have flushes of pink and grow between 5–12cm in size. Flowers are of rosy pink and very pretty. The tree produces edible berries 6–9mm long. Male and female flowers arise on separate plants (dioecious), so both sexes are required for the production of berries. Māori children used to feast on the berries, which were also squeezed and strained to make a sweet drink. It is also said the early European settlers used the fruits to make jam and jelly, and wine. The plants would also make good chook forage plants if you have the space.
The plants can also be used medicinally – an infusion from the bark was used to treat burns and rheumatism. Māori have also found a multitude of other uses for various parts of the tree: the bark provides a blue-black dye, the poles were used as handles for light fishing nets, sticks were used in a game called poi rākau among Ngāti Porou, and saplings were used for stilts. Prefers moist soils and can be slightly frost tender when young. PB5 certified organic plant.