Flueggea neowawraea

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Starr 030523-0020 Flueggea neowawraea.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Phyllanthaceae
Genus: Flueggea
Species: F. neowawraea
Binomial name
Flueggea neowawraea
W.J.Hayden, 1987[2]

Drypetes phyllanthoides (Rock) Sherff[3]
Neowawraea phyllanthoides

Flueggea neowawraea (Mēhamehame) is a species of flowering tree in the Bignay family, Phyllanthaceae, that is endemic to Hawaii. It can be found in dry, coastal mesic, and mixed mesic forests at elevations of 250 to 1,000 m (820 to 3,280 ft). Associated plants include kukui (Aleurites moluccana), hame (Antidesma pulvinatum), ʻahakea (Bobea sp.), alaheʻe (Psydrax odorata), olopua (Nestegis sandwicensis), hao (Rauvolfia sandwicensis), and aʻiaʻi (Streblus pendulinus). Mēhamehame was one of the largest trees in Hawaiʻi, reaching a height of 30 m (98 ft) and trunk diameter of 2 m (6.6 ft). Native Hawaiians used the extremely hard wood of this tree to make weaponry.[4]

Although it had declined along with other dry and mesic forest plants, many large trees could still be found until the 1970s. At that point, the arrival of the black twig borer, (Xylosandrus compactus) caused a catastrophic collapse of the species. Today, populations only exist in the northwestern part of Kauaʻi, the Waiʻanae Range on Oʻahu, the southwestern slopes of Haleakalā on Maui, and the Big Island's Kona coast. Nearly all living individuals exist as basal shoots from older trees where the main trunk has died, or are outplanted saplings. Because of the extreme durability of the wood and its easily recognized fluted pattern, many dead trunks can still be found.


  1. ^ World Conservation Monitoring Centre 1998. Flueggea neowawraea. 2010 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Archived June 27, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. Downloaded on 23 March 2011.
  2. ^ "Flueggea neowawraea W. J. Hayden". Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. 2000-02-23. Retrieved 2011-03-23. 
  3. ^ Medeiros, A. C.; C.F. Davenport; C.G. Chimera (1998). "Auwahi: Ethnobotany of a Hawaiian Dryland Forest" (PDF). Cooperative National Park Resources Studies Unit, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa: 29. 
  4. ^ "Flueggea neowawraea". CPC National Collection Plant Profile. Center for Plant Conservation. Retrieved 2011-03-23. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Flueggea neowawraea at Wikimedia Commons