New Zealand Post - official issuer of New Zealand stamps & commemorative coins

Wild Flowers

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From the garden to the countryside you will find wild flowers growing in profusion and somehow this colourful scene brightens the day.

Issue information

Within this set of four delightful wildflowers not only has the essential simplicity of form and purity of colour been successfully captured by the designer but the chosen flowers are made more interesting by their respective backgrounds.

Wild ginger and monbretia are 'escaped' garden flowers which were probably planted by early settlers to remind them of 'home'.  The seeds were carried by wind, water and animals to places far beyond the original garden and now provide colour along our roadsides and over the countryside.

Product listing for Wild Flowers

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Image Title Description Price
Single Stamp

Single 40c 'Clover (Trifolium repens and Trifolium pratense)' gummed stamp.

The delicacy of its bloom belies the fact that the clover is an extremely hardy and virile plant. Introduced originally from Europe to improve nitrogen levels in pasture, various strains of clover have since been bred but the two pictured here are probably the most familiar. The fragile flowers of the hard working White Clover (repens) and the Red Clover (pratense) can be seen and enjoyed in pastureland throughout New Zealand.

Single Stamp

Single 60c 'Lotus (Lotus pedunculatus)' gummed stamp.

The exotic name given to this European birdsfoot trefoil becomes remarkably apt when the golden bloom is studied closely. The intensity of the colour is almost too rich, too out of place, for a simple wildflower. From its European ancestry the lotus has inherited a distinct preference for the more moist climate often found in the high country. Why the lotus has been blessed with such beauty no one knows, but those who find it, mingling so well in the New Zealand landscape, can create their own reasons for its attractiveness. The lotus has a history shrouded in mystery and it can be planted in pasture, but mainly runs wild.

Single Stamp

Single 70c 'Monbretia (Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora)' gummed stamp.

This native of southern Africa has settled happily in the warmer damp areas of New Zealand. The Monbretia bulb mixes with the roadside grasses of districts such as Northland and Westland adding a distinct orange hue with a multitude of tiny spikes of blossom. Early travellers introduced these bulbs to beautify their gardens but, as with so many varieties before and since, the monbretia "escaped" to revert to its original wild state. The unharnessed informality of the growth pattern over the generations has added great charm to the monbretia's chosen habitats in its adopted country.

Single Stamp

Single 80c 'Wild Ginger (Hedychium gardnerianum)' gummed stamp.

Wild flowers have reached the shores of New Zealand from all manner of faraway places. Wild ginger was probably brought here by early colonists as a small reminder of home. However nature soon scattered the seeds of these wildflowers far beyond the confines of the settler's gardens and, today, two wild ginger varieties have established themselves throughout the New Zealand countryside. The yellow tinted flower (gardnerianum) adorns the Himalayan wild ginger while the Indian wild ginger has a pale creamy bloom (hedychium flavescens). Being so far from their native lands seems of no consequence to these delightful wildflowers as they grow in beautiful profusion to provide a dash of colour to the roadsides and rural districts of New Zealand.

First Day Cover First day cover with stamps affixed. Cancelled on the first day of issue. $2.67

Technical information

Date of issue: 18 January 1989
Designers: H Arnold, Auckland
Printers: Leigh-Mardon, Australia
Stamp size: 35mm x 30mm
Sheet size: 100 stamps per sheet
Process: Lithography
Perforation gauge: 13.25 x 13
Paper type:  Red phosphor coated, unwatermarked
Period of sale: These stamps remained on sale until 18 January 1990.