Mānoa Heritage Center



Naupaka kahakai

Scaevola taccada

Native Indigenous

A tough and hardy shrub that grows near the coast, it’s a great help to prevent erosion. Crushed leaves, roots, and round white buds are used in medicine and to defog snorkel masks. Tiny flowers ranging in color from white and purple to yellow, appear to be “half flower” because all five petals droop to one side. Learn about the significance of its shape in the moʻolelo below.