Plants in Hawaiian Culture

Plant Databases

Hawaiian Ethnobotany Database
Search for some 145 plants commonly used in traditional Hawaiian culture by either its Hawaiian or scientific name. Information includes medicinal and other uses, dye color, description, habitat, famous locations, associated mele, ʻōlelo noʻeau, kinolau and moʻolelo.

Hawaiian Native Plant Genera
This list created by the UH Botany Department is designed for instant access to any scientific or common name in this index. Follow the link to the appropriate web page for more information and illustrations pertaining to the plant of your choice.

Native Plants Hawai‘i
The goal of Native Plants Hawai‘i (NPH) is to create and establish a single, comprehensive and searchable online knowledge base of endemic and indigenous plants of Hawai‘i. NPH seeks to connect local nurseries to landscape architects and home growers to promote the purchase, use and understanding of local native plants. NPH is a joint project between Kapi'olani Community College and Leeward Community College.

UH Mānoa - Hawaiian and Pacific Collections, Digital Collection
The Hawaiian and Pacific Collections have many digital collections that provide greater access and awareness to our physical materials. Some of their digital collections include:

Land Research

Ethnobotany of the Ahupuaʻa
This Kapi‘olani Community College/Asia-Pacific Digital Library site describes ancient Hawaiian land divisions, the plant species introduced by the first Polynesian settlers and how they used their plants and skills to manage their land.

College of Tropical Agriculture -UH Mānoa
This site offers a wide array of publications, free and fee-based, on tropical and agricultural resources in the islands.It includes resources of non-commercial interest such as home horticulture and commercial agriculture. Full-text publications include topics such as animal waste management, biotechnology, pasture and range management, plant disease, and weed control. It is also an excellent gateway to related websites and resources.