Close message Scootle will stop supporting resources that use the Adobe Flash plug-in from 18 Dec 2020. Learning paths that include these resources will have alerts to notify teachers and students that one or more of the resources will be unavailable. Click here for more info.

Image Köwhai herbarium sheet

TLF ID R2457

This is a herbarium sheet of köwhai ('Sophora tetraptera') collected by botanists Joseph Banks and Daniel Solander in New Zealand in 1769 as they accompanied Captain James Cook on his first voyage to New Zealand aboard the 'Endeavour'. The sheet holds dried köwhai flowers, seeds and foliage, and has a variety of identifying marks.

Educational details

Educational value
  • This asset shows that botanists accompanied Captain James Cook on his first voyage in 1768 - Joseph Banks and Daniel Solander collected more than 360 specimens on this voyage.
  • It indicates that botanical specimens can last for a very long time - this one was remounted in 1895, indicated by New Zealand botanist Thomas Kirk’s handwriting on the specimen sheet.
  • It presents an example of a native plant from New Zealand - köwhai is sometimes referred to as the national flower of New Zealand; it has bright yellow flowers, can reach up to 12 metres in height, and grows at altitudes from sea level up to 450 metres; unusually for a native New Zealand tree, it is deciduous, losing its tiny, dull-green leaves each winter.
  • It illustrates that botanical specimens were mounted and kept in collections for research and study - this one was used by Thomas Kirk to assist him in writing his book 'Students’ Flora of New Zealand and the Outlying Islands', published in 1899.

Other details

  • Content provider
  • Copyright holder
  • Organisation: Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Remarks: Reproduced courtesy of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Author
  • Date of contribution: 1769
  • Name: Joseph Banks
  • Remarks: collector
  • Copyright holder
  • Organisation: British Museum (Natural History)
  • Remarks: Gift of the trustees of the British Museum (Natural History) c1895
  • Author
  • Date of contribution: 1769
  • Name: Daniel Solander
  • Remarks: collector
  • Publisher
  • Date of contribution: 29 Aug 2013
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia
  • Address: Melbourne VIC 3000 Australia
  • URL:
Access profile
  • Device independence
  • Hearing independence
Learning resource type
  • Image
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer - minimum version: 8.0 (MS-Windows) - maximum version: 9.0 (MS-Windows)
  • Firefox - minimum version: (MS-Windows)
  • Safari - minimum version: 5.1 (MacOS)
Operating systems
  • MacOS - minimum version: 10.6
  • MS-Windows - minimum version: XP - maximum version: 7
  • © Education Services Australia Ltd and Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2013, except where indicated under Acknowledgements