Schedule Change

On Friday, September 19, the U.S. Botanic Garden's outdoor National Garden will close early at 5 p.m. It will reopen for regularly scheduled hours on Saturday, September 20 at 10 a.m.

Koki'o ke'oke'o or Hawaiian white hibiscus

Hibiscus waimeae
Plant Botanical Name: 
Hibiscus waimeae
USBG Plant Location: 
Conservatory
Conservatory Room Location: 
Hawaii
Plant Threat Level: 
Endangered

Hibiscus waimeae is endemic to Kauai, occurring in two distinct and isolated populations on opposite sides of the island. Though separated by less than 30 miles, these have evolved to have unique flower and leaf characteristics that distinguish them from one another. Because Hibiscus species hybridize readily, the unique characteristics of Hibiscus waimeae are threatened by cross-pollination with non-native Hibiscus varieties that have been introduced to Kauai for ornamental use. By carefully hand-pollinating and isolating flowers of Hibiscus waimeae, conservationists are able to collect, grow and store seeds that have not been cross-pollinated.