Wed Apr 16, 12:10:49 AM HST

Hilo

Temp 67°F
Wind SW 7
Saddle Road

Temp 49°F
Wind E 3
Kona

Temp 76°F
Wind E 6
Terms And Conditions

Plant Links
  • Overview
  • Edible Plants
  • Non-edible
  • Flowers
  • Trees
  • Ferns
  • Grass & Sedge
  • Invasive Plants
  • Creature Links
  • Overview
  • Birds
  • Marine Life
  • Reptiles
  • Mammals
  • Insects
  • More Information
    About Hawai'i
  • Hawai'i History
  • Sovereignty
  • Island Language
  • Island Music
  • Island Plants
  • Island Creatures
  • Hawai'i Astronomy
  • Aerial Images
  • Current Information
  • Weather & News
  • Weather Satellite
  • Tide Charts
  • Volcano Update
  • Earthquakes
  • Vog Conditions
  • Island Webcams
  • Things To Do
  • Hikes & Trails
  • Scenic Drives
  • Parks & Beaches
  • Astronomy
  • Fun With Lava
  • Things To Buy
  • Books & Music
  • Aerial Images
  • Hawai'i Homes
  • Resources
  • FAQ Maildrop
  • Visitor Tips
  • Moving to Hawai'i
  • Bringing Pets
  • Hawai'i Homes
  • Hawai'i Jobs
  • Free Monthly
    Desktop Calendar

    Download our
    Free April
    Desktop Calendar
    About Us
  • Terms Of Use
  • Meet Our Team
  • Our Mission
  • Contact Us
  • Other Resources
  • Site Map
  • Home Page
  • Hawai'i Websites

  • To use this site you must read and agree to our Terms and Conditions - Click Here

    (Click here to return to Plants & Creatures)


    Endemic
    (Native)
    Common Name:'Ōhi'a Lehua (oh-he ah lay-who-ah)
    Red Lehua Flowers
    Scientific:Metrosideros polymorpha
    Flower Name:Lehua (lay-who-ah)
    Color:Red, Yellow, Orange, White
    Habitat:Sea level to 9,000 ft

    The 'Ōhi'a Lehua tree is one of the most common trees in Hawai'i. Almost always the name 'Ōhi'a refers to the tree and Lehua to the flower - though technically Lehua can refer to either the tree or flower. The Red Lehua flower is the official flower of the Big Island.

    The tree itself comes in many sizes... from tall towering trees 40 to 60 ft tall, to small shrubs only knee high. The flowers are almost always red, though yellow, salmon, pink and white varieties can be found.

    The wood of the tree itself is a hard wood and can be used in furniture and for flooring, though modern use of the wood is rare. The leaves of the tree can also differ from tree to tree. Some leaves are smooth, while others hairy. Leaves tend to be rounded and somewhat narrow and fairly stiff.

    Many 'Ōhi'a drop aerial roots from their branches. These roots do not reach the ground but stay suspended, collecting moisture from the air. The trees tend to prefer wetter areas but grow just about anywhere, including dry regions, from sea level up to 7,000 ft. In fact, 'Ōhi'a Lehua is so versatile and hardy that it will populate a new lava field within 100 years.

    The 'Ōhi'a Lehua In Hawaiian Mythology
      Picking of the Lehua flowers can cause it to rain.

    The 'Ōhi'a Lehua In Ancient Hawaiian Medicine

      Both the bark and the young red leaves were used in various medicinal preparations.


    A rarer Yellow Lehua


    A very rare salmon Lehua


    Flowers just before opening


    Close up of the leaves


    Aerial roots gather moisture

    See something wrong? Let us know!
    This page is named 'Plants.ohia'.
    Can't Find It?
    Try the Site Index
    EMail this page to a friend by sending them this URL:
    http://www.instanthawaii.com/cgi-bin/hi?Plants.ohia

    Please read our Terms and Conditions For Use
    All images and content, unless otherwise indicated, are © 2004-2014 InstantHawaii / David Cook
    Nene photo in top graphics by Brenda Zaun