top of page

Muehlenbeckia complexa, commonly known as Scrub pohuehue or small-leaved pohuehue, is a fascinating native plant found in New Zealand.  Muehlenbeckia complexa is a vigorous semi-deciduous vine native to New Zealand. It grows into a tangled mass and forms a dense mound up to 2 meters wide and 5 meters high or more.


The leaves are small, rounded, and bright green, produced on long wiry stems that creep and climb.
Its cream-colored flowers are followed by black seeds held in a fleshy cup, which geckos and birds love.

In its native environment, Muehlenbeckia complexa plays a key role in sealing human and natural disturbances on the forest edge. It suppresses the growth of introduced weeds such as blackberry.
The plant promotes increased insect diversity and is used in coastal restoration as an important stabilizing sand dune plant. It provides valuable habitat for birds (nesting and shelter) and also shelters insects and lizards. Plus, it has edible fruit that geckos and birds enjoy.

It prefers full sun to partial shade in open areas and is extremely tolerant of wind and drought (suitable for coastal conditions but not wet). Regular mulching helps suppress weeds and conserve moisture. Pruning is rarely necessary; just keep the growth where you want it.

So, next time you encounter this unassuming vine, remember its hidden beauty and ecological significance! 🌿

Pohuehue | Muehlenbeckia complexa

    bottom of page