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An evergreen shrub up to 15 ft high in the wild, of erect habit, branches broom-like; young shoots angled, clothed with yellowish down. Leaves opposite or in opposite clusters, about 1⁄4 in. long, 1⁄20 in. wide (twice as long on quite young plants), linear inclined to obovate, rounded or bluntish at the end, tapered at the base to a very short stalk, dark green and glabrous above, the midrib deeply sunken, clothed beneath with a yellowish-white felt; margins recurved. Flower-heads solitary from the centre of the leaf-clusters, stalkless, yellowish, 1⁄4 to 1⁄3 in. long, each containing eight to twenty florets. Outer scales of involucre in four rows, bright tawny yellow, rather downy.
Native of New Zealand on both the North and South Islands up to 1,500 ft altitude. It is distinct amongst cultivated olearias in its rather heath-like foliage and habit and its clusters (fascicles) of leaves. In general aspect it resembles Cassinia fulvida. It can be grown in a sheltered spot near a wall at Kew and has made healthy bushes there 6 ft high, apt nevertheless to be severely injured in hard winters. The whole plant has a yellowish tone due to the colour of the down on the shoots, underneath the leaves, and on the involucral scales. It blooms from August to October, but on the whole is a dull shrub.