Divarication is a growth habit that is found in a lot
of New Zealand trees and shrubs. It's a branching
pattern about which there are different theories.
One is that it provides protection for the plant
from harsh climate conditions, and another,
that it evolved to give the plant protection from
the grazing of Moa. On the link above there is
a different theory, one which suggests that it
is an evironment which creates an ideal
habitat for lizards which in turn by eating the small
fruit borne on the inner branches of the plant, facilitates
the dispersal of the seeds.
However the reason that I photographed these shrubs at
Otorohanga is not botanical at all but
that I've been attracted by
their shapes. I still haven't managed to make
a photo that passes, but I will try again.
The plants are in a public planting on the side of
road. They are currently about 3 metres high.