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Photo Credit: Forest & Kim Starr

image description

Photo Credit: Forest & Kim Starr

image description

Photo Credit: Forest & Kim Starr

QUICK FACTS

  • HAWAIIAN NAME lama, elama
  • FAMILY Ebenaceae (ebony and persimmon family)
  • PLANT TYPE Specimen native tree
  • Native or Non-Native? Native
  • WATER Moderate
  • SUN EXPOSURE Partial or Full

lama, Hawaiian ebony, Hawaiian persimmon (Diospryos sandwicensis, D. hillebrandii)

Small to medium tree of dryland forests. The straight black trunk and deep green leaves make lama a handsome tree. New leaves (liko) are pink or red and attractive. The red or yellow ripe fruit is about the size of an olive and is another attractive fea

Plant Uses

  • Specimen native tree, xeriscapes, habitat restoration
  • Very symbolic Hawaiian plant. Lama = light, leading to enlightenment.
  • Hula plant of Laka
  • Wood is highly prized, fruit is edible but not ono, fruit good for native birds

Other Notes

  • Needs more horticultural research.
  • The slow growth is a plus for landscape maintenance (no or reduced pruning costs)