8. Totara Podocarpus totara

Family: Podocarpaceae


Totara is a  well known New Zealand tree growing in lowland areas mainly in the North Island.  It is slow growing and can reach up to about thirtyfive m. The wood is very hard and resistant to rot so has been used extensively for fence posts, house piles and the like. Most Maori waka (canoes) were built from Totara.  In the forest, when surrounded by other trees, the totara grows with a long straight trunk. Some cultivars, totara have been developed for garden use.