Forewords by Paul R. Weissich and William S. Merwin
The only native palms in Hawai'i, loulu are among the Islands' most distinctive plants. Several of the 24 recognized species are rare and endangered and all make handsome and appropriate ornamentals to adorn gardens and landscapes with their dramatic foliage, colorful flower clusters, and conspicuous fruits. In this volume, Donald Hodel shares his expertise on loulu, having traveled extensively throughout Hawai'i to research and photograph nearly all the species in their native habitat. In the course of his work, he described and named three loulu that were new to science.
Each of the 24 species is treated in detail and this book is handsomely illustrated with more than 200 color photographs that clearly show leaves, flower stalks, fruits, and habitat. Chapters on loulu history, botany, ecology, conservation, uses, and propagation and culture provide essential background information for readers, whatever their level of interest or expertise. In the appendices, they will find a concise summary of loulu, lists of species by island, and an illustrated compendium of exotic, naturalized palms of Hawai'i and relatives of loulu found throughout the South Pacific.
As interest in growing and conserving native Hawaiian plants surges while their numbers and habitat continue to decline, Loulu: The Hawaiian Palm will be valued as one of the most comprehensive and thoroughly illustrated treatments of these exceptional plants.