An easy to grow native plant that is both wind and salt tolerant! One of the most popular native plants used in landscaping.
Long ago, the buoyant seeds of the Scaevola genus floated all over the Pacific: cruising on currents, riding on waves, and finally landing on the shore to grow. Modern day studies showed that Scaevola seeds are most viable after spending an average of 250 floating in the ocean. This explains why the indigenous species Scaevola taccada has such a wide range.
Scaevola in Latin translates to left hand or awkward. The common name naupaka kahakai means naupaka by the sea. Hawaiians looked to the half flowers of the various naupaka species to tell tragic stories of love lost. In one legend of naupaka: two star crossed lovers are represented by half flowers. Growing separately never to unite as one whole flower, one banished to the ocean, the other on the mountain. In another, a scorned woman rips a flower in half in a fit of jealousy. Either way, Hawaiians found lovely ways to explain speciation of native species.
Naupaka kahakai is a botanical treasure. The plant provides: mask defogger, fiber, medicine, food, dye, lei making, beach stabilization, and ornamental landscaping.
Full sun is best, part sun gives the plant a leggy look. Keep trimmed for robust growth.
- Container plant
- Cultural significance
- Erosion control
- Lei flower
- Privacy / screening
- No dangers