Sophora tetraptera is a small to medium, evergreen tree, growing to 15–39 ft (4.6–12 m). The much-divided (pinnate) green leaves are 3–6.3 in (7.5–16 cm) long. The yellow flowers are up to 2.2 in (5.7 cm) long; spring to summer.
Sophora tetraptera is found in forest edges in North Island, New Zealand. It is commonly called kowhai, its Maori name. In the UK it is best grown against a south-facing wall. This tree was introduced to the UK in 1772.