Scientific Name: Miconia calvescens
This invasive plant produces massive 3 foot long leaves that creates a dense canopy that smothers all other life. This plants also has a shallow root system that increased erosion compared to native plants. A single Velvet tree can produce over 3 million seeds that remain viable for up to 5 years. This plant is such a threat that if allowed to run wild could take over 1/4 of the total land in Oahu.( Image by Forest and Starr)
Scientific Name: Acacia koa
This iconic plant is known for it’s sickle shaped leaves, but is often confused with Australian eucalypts which is very similar. To tell the difference one can break a leaf off and see if it smells like eucalyptus or grass. Hawaiians actually used the elepaio bird to check on the health of koa trees before they were used for massive voyaging and fighting canoes. If the bird found many insects than the tree was probably bad if it found few it was a good sign Click here for full article
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