One Thing I Love: Palm Trees in Hawaii

When I was growing up my dad collected books about palm trees in Hawaii and across the world. He had books about the most exotic of species and the common ones you’ll find along the highways in Hawaii. Though I never really studied them nor can I name more than a few types (Cocos nucifer, anyone?), palm trees have never failed to impress, inspire, and intrigue me.

About cocos nucifer

The coconut palm, or niu in Hawaiian, is one of the most important plants to the islands, brought here by Polynesians during their voyage across the Pacific. The niu is one of many “canoe plants”, that accompanied the Polynesians on their long journeys. The niu is probably the most useful plant in all of the tropics. In addition to simply looking good on any stretch of land, the coconut palm tree can be used for:
  • food and drink, including coconut water and meat
  • shade and shelter (these trees can withstand strong hurricane winds)
  • clothings
  • furniture, baskets, and mats
  • brooms and fans
  • soaps and ointments
  • oil for fuel and light
(Did we miss any? Leave us a comment!) Even more intriguing, Hawaiian fishermen would chew coconut meat, then spit it onto water. This created a calm over the water that made it easy enough to see a fish underwater the surface. The next thing that happened? Dinner was ready to be cooked.

A symbol of Hawaii

Palms trees will forever be a symbol of the Hawaiian Islands. Every visitor who comes to Hawaii will fall in love with these tropical trees. Their abundance is to be admired, and their existence has a richer history than most would expect.

Did you know?

The State of Hawaii removes all coconuts from palm trees located on public space. Why? Because if one falls down it’s dangerous! Palm trees on private land are left liable in the hands of their owners.

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