Landcare Research - Manaaki Whenua

Landcare-Research -Manaaki Whenua

Key to flowering plant genera of New Zealand

This Lucid 3 interactive key will allow you to identify to genus New Zealand's flowering plants that are wild (native and naturalised) and casual (reproducing themselves in gardens or known wild from single records).

David Glenny, Trevor James, Jane Cruickshank, Murray Dawson, Kerry Ford & Ilse Breitwieser

There are currently 1075 genera in the key, and the key uses 56 features to identify them. The key is illustrated with 9000 images, showing a representation of each genus and the features used to identify them. The key links to Ngā Tipu o Aotearoa, Landcare Research's plant names list, and accepts all wild and casual genera recognised there. The genera are organised by family using the same classification.

The key uses simple features like leaf arrangement, leaf division, flower and fruit colour to be useful to as wide an audience as possible. Illustrated explanations of the features are provided. The key is particularly useful for identifying plants that lack flowers or fruit and has a subset of 'vegetative only' features.

The TFBIS (Terrestrial & Freshwater Biodiversity Information System) Programme fully funded this project.TFBIS have provided current funding to create app versions of this key for smartphones and tablets.

We welcome comments and corrections to the key. Errors in a key of this size and compiled from many sources are inevitable, and the best way to find these at this stage is through using the key. Please use the email contact below.


System Requirements

This key will run on most browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, IE and Microsoft Edge.

Although this key is not optimised for portable devices, it displays OK on tablets.

Dedicated smartphone apps are available for two of the keys on these webpages (Coprosma and Native orchids).

How to cite:

Glenny D, James T, Cruickshank J, Dawson M, Ford K, Breitwieser I, 2012. Key to flowering plant genera of New Zealand.
Accessed at
Date of access: 18 Jul 2024