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Native Hawaiian Plants

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Ahupua'a
 

Native Hawaiian plants were an integral part of ancient Hawaiian life, being used for everything from food and symbolic decorations in ceremonies to medicine. Today, there are relatively few people knowledgeable in the identification and uses of Hawai'i's indigenous plant life. This has caused a lack of passage of such knowledge, which is in turn endangering many native Hawaiian plant species. Follow these links and hopefully you can learn what too many of us know so little about.

Canoe Plants of Ancient Hawai'i
http://www.hawaii-nation.org/canoe/

This site covers extensively the most common plants used by the Hawaiians for survival, most of which were brought to Hawai'i. The site also contains a links page with links to sites on canoe voyaging and native Hawaiian plants, among other things.

Canoe voyaging and Native Hawaiian plants links page
http://www.hawaii-nation.org/canoe/


University of Hawai'i Botany
http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/faculty/carr/natives.htm

This site contains an exhaustive listing, including descriptions and illustrations, of every type of native Hawaiian plant, courtesy of the University of Hawai'i's Botany Department.


Hawai'i Plants
http://www.vterrain.org/Hawai`i/Flora/

This site contains quite extensive coverage of plants currently in Hawai'i, including descriptions, whether or not the plant is indigenous, and links to pictures of the plant where available. This site also has vegetation maps and some excellent links to other sites.


Bishop Museum
Amy B. H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden
http://www.bishop.hawaii.org/bishop/greenwell/index.html

This is the site for a botanical garden on the Kona side of the island of Hawai'i. It briefly discusses the use of the Kona side by the ancient Hawaiians. The garden itself is a small replica of the ancient and once productive Kona Field System, most of which was covered over with crops such as sugar and coffee.


How to Plant a Native Hawaiian Garden
http://www.state.hi.us/health/oeqc/garden/

This site is an online handbook on how to plant native Hawaiian gardens. It provides detailed step by step instructions on how to setup your own garden, as well as extensive information on each native Hawaiian plant. This is an excellent site to visit, especially if you are interested in growing your own native Hawaiian plants!


Honolulu Botanical Gardens
http://www.co.honolulu.hi.us/parks/hbg/hbg.htm

Interested in seeing some native Hawaiian plants up close and personal? The Honolulu Botanical Gardens' site lists various gardens on Oahu that grow native Hawaiian plants, gardens that you can visit.


I found most of these sites by doing searches through Netscape and MSN. You can click on the images above to get to Netscape's or MSN's site and do your own search.

 

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