Sunday, June 22, 2014

Visiting Kauai -- Native Flowers!

Last post I showed spectacular tropical flowers you can easily see in Kauai. (LINK) Those are from elsewhere in the tropics, brought to Hawaii because someone liked them.

Also in Kauai are native plants. It is believed that since the volcanic emergence of the Hawaiian Islands from the Pacific, 271 different plants have arrived without help from humans--as seeds, as pieces, traveling by bird, floating or on the wind--and established populations. From those 271 colonists, about 1200 species have evolved, spread over the Hawaiian Islands.  Here are some examples:

Metrosideros polymorpha, ohia lehua

Ipomoea pes-capre, beach morning glory

makou, Peucedanum sandwicense

uhiuhi Caesalpinia kavaiensis

nehe Lipochaeta connata

koki'o Hibiscus kokio

You'll have a harder time finding all of these plants than the introduced ones of the previous post (LINK) because they are less widely planted. But they're handsome too.

Wonderful flowers on Kauai!

Once again, sticking in the names where I just wanted to admire the flowers, seemed intrusive.
Here are the plant names. People are using the Hawaiian name as the English common name these days (except, Hawaiians called Ipomoea pes-caprae pohuehue) so I didn't italicize the common names. Doing that makes it clearer which is the scientific name. (see post on names link)

ohia lehua, Metrosideros polymorpha (eucalyptus family, Myrtaceae)
beach morning glory Ipomoea pes-caprae, (morning glory family, Convolvulaceae)
makou, Peucedanum sandwicense (dill family, Apiaceae) (originally Hawaii was called the Sandwich Islands, so the species name, sandwicense means "of Hawaii")
uhiuhi, Caesalpinia kavaiensis (pea family, Fabaceae) (here the namer changed the u of Kauai to v, but kavaiensis means "of Kauai")
nehe, Lipochaeta connata (sunflower family, Asteraceae)
koki'o Hibiscus kokio (hibiscus family, Malvaceae)

Plant name help: National Tropical Botanic Garden, Kauai

Kathy Keeler

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