The Māori chiefs of the Migration apparently wore red wreaths of some material. It is related that one of these chiefs threw his kura ashore when he saw the red blossoms of rata, thinking he could replace his wreath on shore. The red grass from this wreath took root and spread; it is still to be found growing at Whangaparaoa, near Auckland.



  • Tregear, Edward. (1891). Maori-Polynesian Comparative Dictionary. Wellington: Government Printer, p. 185.

This article incorporates text from Maori-Polynesian Comparative Dictionary (1891) by Edward Tregear, which is in the public domain.