Rewarewa grows to 30m tall, with a slender crown. The bright red flowers are 2 – 3.5 cm long.
It was called New Zealand honeysuckle by early European settlers but the name has fallen into disuse in preference for the Māori name. Rewarewa flowers are a great source for honey production. The rewarewa is noted for its timber, which is handsomely figured for interior work although not durable in exposed situations.