Unique Mahoe Honey
The Bees' Choice
In our world, we trust nature. Our forests offer many floral types,
including manuka, but our bees just pass them by, and as our pollen
testing shows, they clearly prefer to visit the mahoe flower. Discerning
honey lovers consistently tell us that our mahoe honey looks and tastes
way better than manuka honey. We leave it to you find out why.
Address: 363a Mataatua Road Ruatahuna 3046 New Zealand
Phone:+64 7 3663 166
Take a look at our story and views
on "Trees for Bees" at a conference
for this kaupapa (2014)
The story of Manawa Honey NZ is featured
here in Project Whenua, an educational
series from Maori TV (2014)
Take a look at the story of Manawa
Honey NZ featured in this ‘Marae’
Tuawhenua Trust (that owns Manawa Honey
NZ), along with Landcare Research, sends
our researcher to Antarctica (2014)
Tuawhenua Trust sends matauranga experts
to global indigenous knowledge on pollination
workshop in Panama City (2014)
Manawa Honey features again in this
programme from Mataora (2014)
Our ancestors would use a slab of soft mahoe for scraping with a pointed
stick of harder wood such as kaikomako in the friction method for making
fire. The wood is slow burning and smouldering sticks of it were carried in
stone container to transport ‘fire’. Click here for more information on the
Mahoe for making fire before the advent of lighters and matches.
Click here for more about traditional medicinal uses fo mahoe. The
black juice of the mahoe fruit was also used as the colourant for traditional
taa moko (tattoo process). The ashes of the vegetable caterpillar were
mixed with the juice of the mahoe fruit and applied to incisions in the skin.
Medicinal and Other Uses
Our ancestors also used the mahoe for medicinal purposes. The bark was
stripped and prepared as a pack on burns; the leaves would be used for
bathing areas affected by rheumatism, and for application to wounds and
The Mahoe Tree
Our Mahoe Tree is native to New Zealand and is not related to trees of the
same name from Jamaica or Hawaii. Mahoe is commonly found as a
handsome shrub or small tree in our region in gullies and streamside areas.
As a food source, the mahoe tree is an important part of the ecosystems of
our forest. The flowers of the mahoe are of pale colour, with a strong
pleasant fragrance. They attract bees and other insects for pollination and
nectar. The fruit which shows as a violet-blue colour is a favoured food
source for forest birds especially kereru, our native wood pigeon, which is
of great significance for our people.
“The Little Honey Pot”
The botanical name for mahoe is Melicytus Ramiflorus. Melicytus comes
from the Greek words meli (honey) and kytos (cavity or receptacle),
which refers to a nectar-filled cavity found below the flower stamens.
Ramiflorus means branch flowering, which refers to the way in the flowers
appear directly off the branch stalks. The mahoe flower is small but is
produced in great profusion in a series of flushes over a long season from
spring through summer. From its name we think of Mahoe as “The Little
Honey Pot”. Click here to find out more about Melicytus Ramiflorus
“The Little Honey Pot”.