hawaii: plants/trees Archives

February 25, 2008

one of my favorite trees

One of my favorite trees here in Hawaii is the Golden Shower Tree. I was surprised to see that it had already bloomed when driving home last week. I always thought it bloomed in March or April as I remember it blooming around Easter time. I went home, grabbed my camera, and then drove back to take a few photos of the tree. Lucky thing that I did because today already half of the flowers have fallen to the ground.

The botanical name of this tree is Cassia fistula. I have known it for years as just the shower tree or the yellow shower tree. Only since researching this tree on my favorite encyclopedia, google, did I find out that the real name of this tree is the Golden Shower Tree. There are a few varieties of this tree here in Hawaii (golden, pink, & rainbow).

While researching, I found an interesting article in the Honolulu Advertiser that talks about some of the beautiful trees in Hawaii, including the Golden Shower Tree.


February 26, 2008

the Rainbow Eucalyptus tree

To finish out my tree mini series, the first time I saw the Rainbow Eucalyptus, also known as the Mindanao Gum, was a few years ago while I was on the University of Hawaii campus hanging out before my photography class began. I was immediately drawn to the beautiful colors of the bark of this tree.

The Rainbow Eucalyptus is originally from Papua New Guinea. It is grown nearly exclusively for it's amazingly colored trunk.The botanical name of this tree is Eucalyptus deglupta.


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November 17, 2008


I took these photos a couple of weeks ago in the parking lot outside the medical plaza building/hospital near not too far from my house on a gloomy gray day (much like the weather is today).




March 21, 2009

"yellow"~ PhotoHunt


I was amazed at how many yellow photos I have. Yellow buildings, yellow Smart Cars, yellow foods, yellow vehicles, yellow hats, yellow chairs, yellow trees, etc. etc.

I decided to share something from Hawaii. I have been walking by this gorgeous yellow hibiscus flower all week at school. The bush is located between my class and the Kindergarten class. I grabbed the camera in my classroom one day and took a few photos as our class headed to the bathroom, a place we visit frequently. I often joke that my desk should be located in that bathroom.

Most of the hibiscus bushes at our school produce red hibiscus flowers. We also have a few bushes with orange and white or light pink flowers. The bush with the yellow hibiscus flowers at our school is my favorite.


One more view...

This yellow hibiscus flower is not the native yellow hibiscus (Hibiscus brackenridgei A. Gray) which is the Hawaii State Flower. If you scroll down to the bottom of the page of this link, you will see a close up of the native yellow hibiscus.

March 24, 2009

photos of the Makiki Forest Recreation Area

This morning I had an appointment in town (Honolulu). I ended up getting into town much earlier than I anticipated due to very little traffic. I had about thirty minutes to kill. I decided to head up to the Makiki Forest Recreation Area or as many know it, the Hawaii Nature Center. It is only a 5 minute drive from the craziness of traffic, high rises, and noise of the city.

I am always amazed at how peaceful this place can be. I haven't been up there in a quite a while. The gravel parking lot has moved down to the bottom of the road. They have knocked down the old Nature Center (a great place to go on a field trip or to take kids to on the weekends) and built a new one. There are two hiking trails I used to hike quite a bit that start by the Nature Center.

I love walking around in this forest area. The smell of eucalyptus is in the air. Birds are chirping, the brook is babbling ( the Kanealole Stream), and the leaves of the trees are rustling in the wind. Oh and every once and a while you will hear a few chickens and roosters and if you are lucky, you will see a few hanging out.

Here are some of the photos I took today. The photos are of my walk from the parking lot to the beginning of the trail head. I did not hike today but hope to go back next week with a friend if the weather cooperates and do the Makiki Valley Loop Trail - the Kanealole Trail, the Makiki Valley Trail, and the Maunalaha Trail (all of which connect at one point to make the loop).




Continue reading "photos of the Makiki Forest Recreation Area" »

April 4, 2009

"stripes"~ PhotoHunt


I took these photos while hiking in the Makiki Forest Recreation Area on Thursday.




Continue reading ""stripes"~ PhotoHunt" »

June 16, 2009


I took these photos of various types of pineapples up at the Dole Pineapple place when was hanging out with Candi & Bill.





(There's more pinepples on the next page...)

Continue reading "pineapples" »

March 2, 2010

looking up


March 3, 2010


... or at least I think this is a bromeliad plant. Can you name the most popular bromeliad plant? (answer below)

I took this photo by the side of the road in the Kahala neighborhood along with the photo I posted yesterday while working on my first photo class assignment. I am pretty excited that I have been successful taking photos that are in focus when using the manual settings on my camera.


From the Bromeliad Society International website:
Bromeliads are members of a plant family known as Bromeliaceae (bro-meh-lee-AH-say-eye). The family contains over 3000 described species in approximately 56 genera. The most well known bromeliad is the pineapple.

March 4, 2010


These were going to be my photos for the spotted PhotoHunt theme a few weeks ago until I decided to go with the spotted fish photos.

I found this plant on that same side of the road not far from the bromeliad plant photo I posted yesterday. I have no clue what type of plant this is (Marta?) but I thought it was pretty cool looking, especially when I noticed the the back side of the plant.




*Mahalo Marta! The plant is called the Laua'e fern, which grows abundantly in the Hawaiian islands. The botanical name is Phymatosorus scolopendria. It is used by native Hawaiians for scenting clothing and leis.

June 26, 2010

"purple"~ PhotoHunt


The purple crown flower (known as pua kalaunu in Hawaiian) is a popular flower used for making leis.




I took these photos yesterday afternoon using my 60mm macro lens. One of the skills I really need to work on when shooting close up is focusing. I have found focusing to be much more challenging when shooting with a DSLR, or maybe it is more of a challenge because I am shooting manual. The three photos I posted turned out to be the best out of the bunch. I ended up doing a bit of cropping on all three due to focusing issues, but in the end, I like how they came out.

June 29, 2010

new photography class

My photography class started last week. This class is more of a creative class rather than a class on settings and how to shoot manual.

For our first class, we talked about some of the elements that make a good composition. We need to choose a genre for our photos and once we choose our genre, we cannot change it. Even though I have had months to think about which genre to choose (we were told this during the last day of the previous class I took), I still could not decide. I took a ton of photos the past few days while still thinking about a few genre possibilities (beach, flowers, plants, lines, architecture).

For our first assignment, we need to turn in just one photograph. I was up until 1 am Monday morning trying to finally make a decision on my genre and then trying to decide on which photo out of the hundreds I took to turn. On Wednesday, when the photo is shown in class, we will need to defend it while everyone else critiques the photo.

So, here is the photo I turned in. I decided on lines.


*Update July 1st: How my class went: I really enjoyed the variety of themes chosen by the different people in the class. I think I am going to learn a lot from everyone. I feel a little more relaxed now that I got my first photo out of the way. I received some nice critiques on my photo and my teacher said that my theme (lines in nature - had to make it a bit more specific) sounded like an interesting theme. Oh, and can you see a letter in my leaf photo? I didn't notice it until my teacher pointed it out.

July 23, 2010

"hanging"~ PhotoHunt


Easy theme for me this week. I have tons of hanging photos. Here are a few of my favorites that I have taken in the past few weeks...




The last three are for Marta :)



October 5, 2010

good morning world!

Good morning!! My blog has been without a new post in over two months. I thought it was about time to start it up again. After thinking about what to post for a couple of days, I decided to go with a few close ups (some cropped) of a few flower photos I took this summer. Nothing special, just something cheery and colorful.




November 14, 2010

a visit to the Lyon Arboretum

The Lyon Arboretum is the only university botanical garden located in a tropical rainforest in the U.S. I visited this beautiful botanical garden yesterday for the first time. I went with a friend to explore and take photos.

The Lyon Arboretum is located at the very end of Manoa Road. It was quite an adventure getting there. As you reach the end of the road, your driving skills will be tested as you come upon a few very narrow hairpin turns. The signs warning of falling branches also made me a little nervous. Fortunately my car made it there fully intact.

Once you arrive, you are greeted with this magnificent view.

There are a few trails on the lower grounds and many more trails that go up into the mountains. We decided to stay on the lower grounds. The first trail we took led us to the Hawaiian Ethnobotanical Garden. Not far from the start of this trail, we noticed a guy hanging from a rope climbing a huge tree.

We walked over to investigate. When we reached the small group of people nearby, I heard my name called. I was shocked! The person turned out to be someone I taught with at my former school. She asked me if I was still in Hawaii. At first, I wondered if that was a trick question. I replied, "Yes, I am in Hawaii". Turns out for some reason she thought I moved to the mainland instead of just transferring to another school on Oahu. Small world!

View of taro plants by the tree climbing activity:

More photos from our walk:




Continue reading "a visit to the Lyon Arboretum" »

November 27, 2010

"written"~ PhotoHunt



It may be time to replace this written sign located behind the Iolani Palace by the big banyan trees. If you are having trouble reading this, the top part of the sign says: PLEASE DO NOT CARVE OR DEFACE TREE and the bottom part of the sign says: DO NOT CLIMB THE TREE and below that, DO NOT SWING FROM ROOTS.

Have a great day everyone :)

*11-28 Edited to add more photos of the banyan trees and the roots...



December 5, 2010

"hard-to-find"~ PhotoHunt


A day late... I am not sure if this plant is really hard to find but I have never seen it before and I have not been able to find its name yet...


A close up of the back of the leaf...


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