Uhiuhi (Mezoneuron kavaiensis) is a critically endangered endemic tree species that still persists in the Waikoloa Dry Forest Preserve.It is a legume, has beautiful magenta flowers and makes large light pink seed pods that can be seen from a distance ornamenting the trees in the preserve. The uhiuhi can be put into two categories: kūpuna and keiki, ancients and seedlings. There are no young trees other than those recently planted, and the future of the uhiuhi in our forest has been relying on the seeds of just a few very old trees for many years. Luckily they are still productive. Each year we collect the seeds of the mature uhiuhi trees, germinate them and nurture them until they are ready to plant out into the forest. One of the main goals of planting uhiuhi trees, and other native plants, within the preserve is to help promote a more self-sustaining forest. By planting we hope to speed up forest recovery and give the trees a head start in competing with weeds and handling the tough conditions in Waikoloa.
This week we harvested the first seeds from a small uhiuhi tree planted in October of 2012 by one of our dedicated volunteers. The flowers emerged earlier in the year and, although we were hopeful, we were surprised to find that seeds had developed successfully in such a young plant. These seeds are too precious to let fall on the ground where they may be just as likely to be devoured by a rodent as they are to germinate and grow into an adult plant. We will keep them stored until we are ready to germinate and grow them in our nursery and eventually plant them out, as the first uhiuhi from a new parent tree since our work began.
Our staff will be offering an interpretive walking tour of the preserve next week. You will have the opportunity to get up close to some of our ancient wiliwili trees which are just getting ready to blossom. We will also tour our restoration areas and get to know some of the native plants in our nursery. There will be ample opportunities for photos! A minimum $20 donation per group is encouraged.
Meet at the corner of Waikoloa Road and Quarry Road just before 9am on Friday August 29th. Wear good shoes or hiking boots and bring a water bottle. Please RSVP through the link below. We hope to see you there.
Summer is almost here and we are finishing up our planting season with a volunteer day this Saturday. We will be working on getting the last few plants in the ground in our newest planting site as well as taking out some aggressive shrubs that have been invading this year due to all of the rain we have had. If you’d like to join us please meet at the junction of Waikoloa Road and Quarry Road just before 8am and we will carpool into the preserve from there. Wear good shoes and bring a water bottle. We will have tools and gloves or you can bring your own. Please RSVP by clicking the button below. Hope to see you then and if not look forward to our volunteer planting days in October!
Please join us for a morning of planting touring and weeding in the Hi’ialo outplant area. We will meet at the junction of Waikoloa Road and Quarry Road at 8am and work until about 11:30. Please wear good shoes and bring a water bottle, sunscreen and a hat. We will provide the rest! Please RSVP by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
This year’s calendar celebrates some of the rarest and endangered plants and animals of our dryland forests. These make thoughtful and beautiful gifts that support our efforts to protect and promote native species including many of the rare ones found in our calendar. Order online today.
The Wiliwili Festival will now be held at the Waikoloa School Saturday September 14th from 9-3pm!
The Wiliwili Festival will be a fun, free educational event for all ages. We will be hosting forest tours, workshops, and kid’s activities in addition to promoting awareness of Hawaiian dry forest ecosystems, the species that live within them and the cultural, ecologic and intrinsic value of our native forests. Please join us and check out our facebook page for more updates!
WDFI is pleased to announce that we will be hosting the 2013 Wiliwili festival. The Wiliwili Festival will be a fun, free educational event for all ages. We will be hosting forest tours, workshops, and kid’s activities in addition to promoting awareness of Hawaiian dry forest ecosystems, the species that live within them and the cultural, ecologic and intrinsic value of our native forests. Please join us and check out our facebook page for more updates!
Had a great morning out at the Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative property joining other volunteers to plant approximately 75 plants and tree seedlings. My partner Linda and I planted wiliwili and uhiuhi trees and ‘akia and ‘a’ali’i plants.
On Feb 9, the Waikoloa Future Foresters learned about the plants that were brought to Hawai’i by the early Polynesian voyagers in their canoes. They learned why they were brought by the Polynesians, what they were used for, and what they are still used for now.
After the lesson, the Future Foresters weaved the leaves of the hala tree (which are called lauhala) into bracelets and learned how to make a musical instrument from kamani seeds.
If you are interested in joining the future foresters, contact Jen Lawson at email@example.com.