Pittosporum tenuifolium is a small evergreen tree, up to 10m. It is sometimes grown under the cultivar name ‘Nigricans’, so called because of its black stems. In horticulture it is valued for its coloured foliage (cultivated variations include purple, “silver” and variegated leaves), and for its tolerance of some horticulturally difficult growing conditions, including dry soils and shade (although in northwest Europe, cold and exposed situations do not suit it). The flowers generally go unnoticed because of their colour, a very dark reddish-purple, and are scented only at night. It is found growing wild in coastal and lower mountain forest areas up to an altitude of 900m. The Latin tenuifolium means “slender-leaved”.