New Zealand Broadleaf Griselinia littoralis

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Not blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
New Zealand broadleaf


Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as New Zealand broadleaf or Kapuka, is an evergreen shrub with a dense, bushy habit. Its standout feature is the glossy, apple green leaves that are broadly oval in shape, with a leathery texture. The edges of the leaves are often slightly wavy and the foliage provides a lush, tropical feel. Small, inconspicuous yellow-green flowers may appear in spring, followed by purple or blackish berries that are favored by birds. The berries are only produced by female plants if a male pollinator is nearby. The bark of New Zealand broadleaf is light gray and can become attractively mottled as it ages. This plant is popular for creating hedges and screens due to its full, compact appearance and attractive foliage.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      New Zealand Privet, Kapuka, Broadleaf.

    • Common names

      Griselinia lucida, Griselinia littoralis var. lucida, Griselinia littoralis var. oblongifolia, Cornus littoralis, Griselinia littoralis var. angustifolia, Griselinia littoralis var. stewartii

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as broadleaf, is not regarded as toxic to humans. There are no well-documented cases of broadleaf poisoning in humans, and it is not known to contain any toxic substances that would cause harm upon ingestion. Therefore, the general consensus is that it poses little to no risk of toxicity if accidentally consumed.

    • To pets

      Broadleaf (Griselinia littoralis) is similarly non-toxic to pets as it is to humans. It is not known to possess any compounds that are harmful to pets such as cats or dogs. There is no significant evidence to suggest that broadleaf ingestion leads to poisoning in pets, so it is generally considered safe in a household or garden environment with regard to pet health.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Height

      6-8 feet (1.8-2.4 meters)

    • Spread

      6-8 feet (1.8-2.4 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area

      New Zealand


  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Privacy Screening: Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as New Zealand broadleaf, is an excellent plant for creating dense hedges that provide privacy and reduce noise pollution.
    • Wind Resistance: It is well-suited to coastal conditions and can withstand strong winds, making it ideal for exposed and coastal gardens.
    • Low Maintenance: New Zealand broadleaf is relatively easy to care for, requiring minimal pruning and able to tolerate a range of soil types.
    • Fast Growth: It is a fast-growing plant, which means it can quickly establish a hedge or fill in a landscape.
    • Aesthetic Appeal: With its lush green foliage, New Zealand broadleaf adds an evergreen presence to the garden, providing year-round visual interest.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, it can tolerate periods of drought, making it suitable for gardens with low water availability.
    • Adaptable to Different Soils: New Zealand broadleaf grows well in a variety of soil conditions, from sandy to clay soils, as long as they are well-draining.
    • Wildlife Attraction: The berries of New Zealand broadleaf can attract birds to the garden, which aids in biodiversity and provides natural pest control.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as New Zealand broadleaf, can be employed as a sound barrier due to its dense foliage when planted in rows, which helps in reducing traffic or neighborhood noise.
    • New Zealand broadleaf hedges can provide a privacy screen, creating secluded areas in gardens or around patios due to its capacity to grow into a thick, impenetrable hedge.
    • The wood of New Zealand broadleaf is sometimes used in carpentry for making small items like picture frames or decorative objects, thanks to its medium density and ease of work.
    • Dense thickets of New Zealand broadleaf can act as a windbreak, protecting sensitive areas like vegetable gardens or delicate flower beds from strong winds.
    • For coastal areas, New Zealand broadleaf serves as an excellent choice for stabilizing sandy soils because of its tolerance to salt spray and its robust root system.
    • By providing habitat and nourishment, New Zealand broadleaf supports local biodiversity, as its berries are a food source for native birds.
    • When planted extensively, New Zealand broadleaf can be part of erosion control strategies on slopes or banks due to its vigorous and spreading root structure.
    • Landscape designers utilize New Zealand broadleaf for topiary because it responds well to pruning and can be shaped into various forms.
    • The leaves of New Zealand broadleaf can be utilized in floral arrangements to create full, green backdrops to enhance the presentation of colorful flowers.
    • In educational projects or conservation efforts, New Zealand broadleaf can be used to teach about native plant species of New Zealand and the importance of plant conservation.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The New Zealand Broadleaf is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The New Zealand Broadleaf is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Growth: Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as broadleaf or New Zealand broadleaf, is a robust and evergreen shrub, symbolizing steady and enduring growth.
    • Adaptability: As a coastal plant, the broadleaf is adapted to withstand harsh sea breezes and salt spray, representing adaptability and resilience in various conditions.
    • Protection: The thick, leathery leaves of the broadleaf can symbolize protection and shelter, as they shield other plants and provide a natural windbreak.
    • Prosperity: With its lush and dense foliage, the broadleaf often signifies prosperity and abundance in the plant world.
    • Privacy: Often used in hedges and screening, the dense growth of Griselinia littoralis can symbolize the desire for privacy or boundary-setting.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    For the New Zealand Broadleaf or Griselinia littoralis, water should be applied deeply and thoroughly to ensure the soil is moist. In general, watering once a week is sufficient, but this can vary based on climate conditions. During hot and dry periods, more frequent watering may be necessary, potentially twice a week. Ensure each time that the plant receives 1 to 2 gallons per watering, depending on the size of the plant and the soil's ability to retain moisture.

  • sunLight

    New Zealand Broadleaf thrives best in full sun to partial shade. An ideal spot is one where the plant can receive at least 4 to 6 hours of sunlight daily, though it can also tolerate some light dappled shade. Avoid placing it in deeply shaded areas as this can impede its growth.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Griselinia littoralis, or New Zealand Broadleaf, is hardy and can tolerate a range of temperatures, yet it prefers a moderate climate. The ideal temperature range for this plant is between 50°F and 70°F. It can survive minimum temperatures down to 20°F but cannot withstand prolonged periods of extreme cold or sudden frosts.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune New Zealand Broadleaf to maintain shape and promote healthier, denser growth. It's best to prune in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Depending on the desired size and shape, pruning can be done annually or as needed when the plant becomes too large or unruly.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as New Zealand broadleaf, thrives best in well-draining soil with a mix of compost, loam, and sand, promoting good root growth. The ideal pH range for this soil mix should be slightly acidic to neutral, about 5.5 to 7.0.

  • plantRepotting

    New Zealand broadleaf should be repotted every 2-3 years to ensure it has enough space to grow and to refresh the soil, as older soil can become compacted and nutrient-depleted over time.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    New Zealand broadleaf prefers moderate humidity levels, but as a hardy plant, it can tolerate a range of conditions, provided it isn't in an excessively dry environment for prolonged periods.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place New Zealand broadleaf in bright, indirect light, away from drafts.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in well-drained soil, shelter from strong winds, in partial shade or sun.

    • Hardiness zone

      7-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as New Zealand Broadleaf or Kapuka, begins its life cycle as a seed, which, when conditions are favorable, germinates in the soil. After germination, a seedling emerges and establishes its first true leaves, entering the juvenile phase. As the plant develops, it progresses into the vegetative stage, characterized by significant growth of stems, leaves, and root systems. Upon reaching maturity, the Kapuka produces small yellow-greenish flowers, generally in spring, signifying the reproductive phase where it intends to produce seeds. Following pollination, which is primarily aided by the wind, the plant develops small purple fruits that contain seeds, thus completing the life cycle when these seeds are dispersed into the environment. The New Zealand Broadleaf is known for its hardiness and evergreen nature, so it continues to grow and can live for many years unless affected by environmental factors or disease.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • The most popular way to propagate Griselinia littoralis, commonly known as broadleaf or New Zealand broadleaf, is through semi-hardwood cuttings. The ideal time to take these cuttings is in late summer. A semi-hardwood cutting is made from the current year's growth that has started to harden or mature. Cuttings should be about 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 centimeters) long, and the lower leaves should be removed. The cut end of the cutting can be dipped into rooting hormone to encourage root growth. The prepared cutting should then be placed in a pot filled with a mix of peat and perlite or a similar free-draining propagation medium. It's essential to maintain a humid environment around the cutting, typically achieved by placing a plastic bag or a propagator over the pot to retain moisture. Cuttings generally root within 6 to 8 weeks, after which they can gradually be exposed to normal conditions before being potted on.