2018 Concert coming up soon

Date posted: 15-Feb-2018

Our 2018 concert will feature an afternoon of light classics and jazz courtesy of the Auckland Ph..

Wetapunga talk coming soon

Date posted: 05-Feb-2018

For the Social on 19 March the speaker will be Ben Goodwin of Auckland Zoo, who will talk about t..

Rat caught and now takahe released from pens

Date posted: 28-Jan-2018

Thankfully DOC staff Andre de Graaf and Polly Hall and their assistants have trapped the rat whic..

Your Christmas Shopping for a Song

Date posted: 04-Dec-2017

Aka - The Grand Christmas Shopping Expedition to Tiritiri Matangi Island Shop Dreading..

2018 Photo Comp opens for entries

Date posted: 27-Nov-2017

The 2018 Photo Competition is now open for entries. Click here (/2018-photo-competition-tiritiri-mat..

New reports on ruru nesting and Island conservation

Date posted: 02-Oct-2017

Two new reports have been added to the website. The first gives details of a summer students..

2018 calendars now available

Date posted: 27-Sep-2017

Our latest calendar, beautifully illustrated with images taken on the Island, is now available fo..

Guided walks for photographers

Date posted: 21-Jun-2017

For a wonderful day of wildlife photography please join us on Tiritiri Matangi Island for a Ph..

Ferry discounts for Supporters

Date posted: 18-May-2017

Tiritiri Matangi Island, the perfect winter's day trip. The birds are at their best, warm up w..

More kiwi for the Island

Date posted: 04-Apr-2017

In 1993 and 1995, sixteen little spotted kiwi were released on Tiritiri Matangi Island. The ma..


Botanical name:  Coprosma robusta
Maori name:  Karamu
Height:  5-10 metres

Karamu occurs as a shrub to small tree throughout N.Z.  Flowers from September to November followed by dense clusters of red to orange berries in March.  These are eagerly harvested by birds.

Maori children ate ripe coprosma berries, described as sweet and juicy with a bitter after taste.

Settlers in the late 19th century, sensing the relationship of coprosma to the coffee plant, did try roasting and grinding the seed of karamu and taupata.  Notes from a meeting of the Wellington Philosophical Society describe that “the beans …… when roasted and ground have a splendid coffee aroma and when made into coffee the result seems to be thoroughly satisfactory.”  Coprosma and Coffea (the coffee plant) both belong in Rubiaceae, the madder family.

Photography by Warren Brewer
© (top right
- male flower, bottom left - female fruit)