Hawaiian Name(s): ‘āwikiwiki, puakauhi

Scientific Name: Canavalia (6 species)

Vernacular Name: none

Family: Fabaceae

Status: endemic

Authority: C. galeata (Gaudich.) Vogel, C. hawaiiensis O.Deg., I.Deg. & J.D.Sauer, C. kauaiensis J.D.Sauer, C. molokaiensis O.Deg., I.Deg. & J.D.Sauer, C. napaliensis H.St.John, C. pubescens Hook. & Arn.

Description: Perennial climbers.

Habitat Habitats vary, often restricted to single islands (Wagner et al. 1990:649–655).

Medicines: A topical treatment for skin disorders is made from the leaf buds, leaves, bark, and roots of the ‘‘āwikiwiki mixed with ‘ohi‘a ‘ai bark (Syzygium malaccense) and ‘auko‘i stalk (Senna occidentalis) (Chun 1994:66)

Non Medicinal Uses: Vines used for simple, temporary fish traps (Abbott 1992:84).

Specific gravity of wood: unknown

Famous Locations:


`Ōlelo Noeau:

Dye Color and Parts:

Kino lau:

Location on Bishop Museum Kalihi Campus:

Propagation Information: Easy. Scarified & soaked seeds planted near fence/tree for support or as ground cover, water regularly; grow rapidly & branch quickly climbing nearby plants (Culliney and Koebele 1999:55–57).
Hawaiian Native Plant Propagation Database.
Native Plants Hawaii.

Seed: Seed length approximately 18 mm. Photograph: B.Kennedy. Species: C. hawaiiensis.
Click for image