Hi! I'm new! Please help...

IrysOctober 9, 2004

me =o) Aloha! I live in Town on Pensacola street(Makiki) and I've just started my own lanai garden. I don't know what zone (?) I'm in or the exact type of climate. The lanai faces Makai (ocean side) with sun most of the day but there is shade along the cement railing. light wind, if any. I want to create a jungle mix of flowers, vines, vegies and perhaps small trees. If there are any tips and types of plants you'd offer me that would be WONDERFUL! =o)

*at the moment I just started with cherry tomoato vine, regular tomato, marigold, miniature rose, a bunch of violas, false heather and a cosmo. Oh my mother came over to add her green onions, egg plant, and she's trying a sweet potato and a small tree (she doesn't have a lanai @her place)

Thank you so much!

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hotzcatz(Hamakua, Hawaii)

Kilgo's has a nice selection of plants and you might get some ideas on which ones you'd like there. There's also Star Market gardenshops and even Home Depot. Watch for the big plant sales at Thomas Square, they have loads of wonderful plants and you can ask the grower about the plant's growing requirements, too.

A passion fruit vine might be nice. Tasty fruit, too! It can grow on a trellis that you can make out of just about anything, bamboo stakes, old clothesline, fencing, they aren't fussy vines at all.

Lots of herbs grow well in pots, too. Rosemary, sage, basil, chives, etc. and you will then have fresh herbs for cooking.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 2:01AM
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Matt G(z11 HI)

I'd suggest that you look for some native plants to add to your garden. The Home Depot and Wal Mart have native plants (both stores are supplied by Hui Ku Maoli Ola native nursery in Waimanalo). These plants are usually not as easy to find as introduced plants, but there are several reasons for growing them.

-They are native and many of them have been here for thousands or millions of years.
-Plants such as coastal and dryland plants (much of the urban and suburban areas were once native dryland forests) will thrive under hot, dry, and nutrient poor soils. these plants.
-They can make an attractive low maintenence landscape.
-Some of these plants are found only in Hawai'i (90% of native Hawai'ian plants are found only in Hawai'i)
-There are endangered species available for horticulture
-Conservation: Save the imperiled Hawai'ian flora

Of course there are many species that will thrive under different conditions. But the dryland and coastal species are best suited for lowland landscapes.

Some plants Home Depot or Wal Mart may have that are good landscape plants (speaking from experience). These plants are plants that I find attractive, and easy to maintain:

-pohuehue (Ipomoea pes-caprae)- non-climbing coastal groundcover, shiny leaves, few pests, pink morning glory flowers 5-7cm.
-'ohai (Sesbania tomentosa, Ka'ena point variety)- Bluish pubescent(hairy)silvery compound leaves, aromatic(this is usually not noticed if you are "looking for" the aroma), red pea flowers, low growing (seldom exceeds 2 ft) sprawling srhub (up to 5' spread), endangered species, easy to grow from seed.
-koki'oke'oke'o (Hibiscus arnottianus)- use as hedge, or specimen tree (with training), attain heights of 30 feet in wild, can be seen in commercial landscapes as 4' tall hedges, large fragrant white flowers. one native plant that has been quite "succesful" in landscapes.
-mamaki (Pipturus albidus)- our garden houses a pleasent 12 foot tall tree of this species (less than two years ago this plant was in a 6" green pot, but has maintained its tree shape). Usually a large shrub but can be trained to a tree form by cutting lower branches. the host of an endemic butterfly, the Kamehameha butterfly. Few pests. leaves used in tea. inhabits mesic and wet forests
-ko'oloa 'ula (Abutilon menziesii)- Small tree, large shrub, or small shrub, heart shaped furry leaves, small red flowers (ofter called red ilima), inhabits drylands, endangered species.

There are many more species that can be used in landscapes and countless that can be experimented with (if you have patients). Other than the Home Depot and Wal Mart. Occaisional and Annual plant sales may carry uncommon natives. Private growers, such as myself, also distribute native Hawai'ian plants.

Possible invasive species should not be used for horticulture. There have been far too many horticulture related introductions that have become threats to native ecosystems, invasive species are still common in landscapes today (its better to grow already naturalized plants than introduce newly naturalized plants). Its amazing that people spend money to buy these plants. When working for natural resource management we spend manpower and money just to get rid of them. Some of these species include: strawberry guava, lantana, melastomes, Wedelia, kahili/white/yellow ginger, and there are many more.

Well despite this post being long. I hope it helps. Good luck!

w/ aloha,

Here is a link that might be useful: Native Plant Pics (sorted by genre)

    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 3:00AM
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hotzcatz(Hamakua, Hawaii)

Great webpage! We have a lot of native plants that I didn't know were native. The artemisia (hinahina) looks like it would make a great flowerbed plant. It doesn't seem to be a big island plant, though. And I might have several of those ferns around - the 'iwa'iwa (Adiantum capillus-veneris) looks like something growing near my front steps. The uluhe fern,(Dicranopteris linearis)is almost a pest, though, since it covers trees (ohia)and kills them.

Hmm, how would I get a copy of Hibiscus waimeae, koki'o ke'oke'o?

And I didn't see any bananas? Weren't they a canoe plant? Lots of folks say the ae'ae banana is a Hawaiian variety.

Well, that was a fun webpage. Thanks Matt!

    Bookmark   October 30, 2004 at 1:27AM
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Hi Irys!
I'm sorry I don't have any help to give, but I just had to write back because I'm also pretty new, living on Pensacola in Makiki, and trying to grow a lanai garden! I got all my plants at the Foster Garden Plant sale. It's a great place to get plants because there are lots to choose from, knowledgeable people, and the sale is a fundraiser for the botanical garden. The only thing is that I don't get much sun because we sit in the shadow of a big building next doors. But I'd love to hear how your garden is doing. HOpe your garden is doing well!


    Bookmark   January 26, 2005 at 8:52PM
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