Hawaiian Name(s): ali‘ipoe, li‘ipoe, poloka

Scientific Name: Canna indica

Vernacular Name: Indian-shot

Family: Cannaceae

Status: naturalized

Authority: L.

Description: Perennial herbs, 8-15 dm tall, leaves 30-60 cm long.

Habitat Disturbed mesic to wet forest, 10–610 m. Naturalized prior to 1825 (Wagner et al. 1990:1375–1376).


Non Medicinal Uses: Often cultivated; black seeds made for lei, used to make ‘uli‘uli (rattles) in hula (Emerson 1909:107). Apparently brough to Hawai‘i as a commercial starch crop (Wagner et al. 1990:1376).

Specific gravity of wood: n/a

Famous Locations:


`Ōlelo Noeau:

Dye Color and Parts:

Kino lau:

Location on Bishop Museum Kalihi Campus:

Propagation Information:

Seed: Seed length approximately 5 mm. Photograph: B.Kennedy.
Click for image