A Lesson in Hawaiian Flora

May 22, 2008 by Kailani  
Filed under Life in Hawaii, guest post, hawaii, hawaii

Yup, I just told Mrs. Earthworm about my blog and she’s already trying to take over. *Just kidding Mom!* Anyway, she was so inspired by all the curious comments on a previous WW post – From My Parent’s Garden – that she decided to put a little something together.Please welcome my Mom in her blogging debut.

Hi, Everyone (or Bloggers?):

Kailani mentioned that some of you were curious about some of the names of the orchids in the photos listed on her blog and asked us if we would like to comment on them…so here we are. We will refer to ourselves as Mr. and Mrs. EW (short for Mr. and Mrs. Earthworm—the good kind for your gardens).

Photo #1. This pretty pink cluster of small blossoms sits on top of a thin (but sturdy) stem that moves with the wind and are called Epidendrum orchids. They are also sometimes known as “Pink Ladies�? or “Dancing Ladies.�?

Photo #2. Anthuriums. These hardy and somewhat waxy flowers are in a class by themselves. They are lovely, long-lasting flowers that can last for over a month as cut flowers in clean water in a vase. They come in a variety of vibrant colors. It is truly a beautiful heart-shaped plant, although there is a misconception that the red heart-shape is the flower, but, in actuality, it is called the spathe which is a modified leaf to the heart-shaped green leaves as shown in the background in the photo. The true flowers emerge on the spadix (the narrow stem that protrudes downwards) but are seldom seen by the naked eye because they are so tiny and will eventually fall off and tiny berries will be formed.

To Tishia Lee: Your grandma was right, they are also called “little boy�? flowers (isn’t that precious?). Always listen to your grandparents; especially grandmas, they are the wisest people on earth and know EVERYTHING! (LOL)

Photo #3. Pineapples. Our pineapples are grown in containers. Mr. EW brought home a pineapple and cut the crown (top) off and put it in a can of water (water needs to be changed at least every couple of days to prevent mosquitoes from breeding) and after several weeks, roots will appear and then it can be planted in a container or ground.

To Christine of Are We There Yet: This “baby�? pineapple won’t be such a baby in another 6-8 months. Mr. EW says it takes about 18 months for it to grow into a full-grown pineapple. So in another 6-8 months, it should turn a golden orange color then it’s ready to harvest (yum—there’s nothing like home-grown fruits.).

I so envy those of you on the mainland who can grow apples, pears, peaches, cherries and all those wonderful fruits and flowers, like daffodils, irises and tulips that we, in Hawaii, can’t or have a difficult time growing.

Photo 4. These lovely white with purple lip orchids are called Dendrobium Nobile. Ladies of Hawaii love to wear them in their hair. They have a nice fragrance.

Photo #5. Similar description as in Photo #1, but is just another variety called an Epidendrum (banguense) orchid with clusters of red-orange blossoms.

Photo #6. These inflorescences of vibrant yellow flowers are called Doritaenopsis Sogo Manager orchids (quite a mouthful, isn’t it?).


1. For a sweeter pineapple after slicing off the top and skinned, sprinkle a little salt and rub it around the whole pineapple, then slice into chunks and chill. It will make your pineapple taste a little sweeter (trust me).

2. Pineapples are high in acidity, so make sure you always wash your hands after eating these delicious fruits. Avoid touching your eyes while eating them or they will swell up (not a pretty sight); otherwise…ENJOY! BTW, same goes for mangoes. Of course, don’t eat any of these fruits if you have some kind of allergic reactions to them like hives or a rash.

Wow! Didn’t mean to ramble on. Hope we were able to answer your questions and thank you for letting us be part of your blog.

Mr. and Mrs. Earthworm

Spotlight Comment from Sher of Everything Moms: Wow Mrs. Earthworm…sounds like you’ve been blogging for years! :) Great job! Thanks for the wonderful education. I love the idea of growing a pineapple like you indicated. I think I might just have to do that. Welcome to the blogosphere! Hope to see you around a lot. Maybe you’ll even start your own blog. :) But be careful….it can be addicting. lol

About the author:
Kailani is the owner and founder of An Island Life. You'll find her sharing her daily life as a mother to 3 wonderful daughters, working as a flight attendant, and living a blessed life in Hawaii. She is also the founder of the group review site - Family Review Network. Follow along on her adventure of a lifetime this Winter as a member of the Vaseline Dry Skin Patrol!
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25 Responses to “A Lesson in Hawaiian Flora”
  1. darci says:

    Great advice! Love the little walk through the garden. Definitely going to try salt on the watermelon

    darci’s last blog post..Gwen’s Party

  2. Carey says:

    Welcome to blogging Mrs. EW.
    Thanks for sharing the beautiful flowers. I wonder if a pineapple would grow in NY? Just to have the pretty plant would be nice.

    Carey’s last blog post..Wordless Wednesday

  3. witchypoo says:

    Well done, Mrs EW! I liked the pineapple tip. I’ve been buying the extra sweet golden variety, and didn’t think they could get much sweeter.
    Will garden lore from the EWs be a regular part of your blog, Kailani? I can see it…

    witchypoo’s last blog post..To The Rescue!

  4. Naomi says:

    I love our pear and plum trees but I would trade them in a second for the mango and lilikoi of my childhood!

    We do have a pineapple growing in a pot inside, though…

    Naomi’s last blog post..The Glamorous Life

  5. Jen @ One Moms World says:

    TY… Mrs. EW. That was so nice of you for taking that time to write all this out. So informational… I didn’t realize it took that long for pineapples. WOW! I have to say that is my favorite fruit hands down.

    Jen @ One Moms World’s last blog post..You Know You Are a Mom When

  6. Renee says:

    wow! great info from your mom…looks like she might need her own blog. ;)

    I’ve told you that DH used to live in HI, right? One year his family went to the Pineapple Bowl game and brought home a pineapple that was spraypainted gold. They saved the top and planted it in the back yard…it of course grew!!!

    And it never occured to me before your mom mentioned it about our fruit trees here. I do now remember that we didn’t have cherries or apples in FL, but did have plenty of citrus trees. So I guess we’re all blessed with different plants.

    speaking of: I’ve gotta go buy some tomatoe plants today…our growing season is too short here to grow tomatoes from seed outdoors…and I didn’t start mine inside like I should have 2 months ago. :(

    Renee’s last blog post..had to share this again

  7. Jeannie says:

    Wow Mr. & Mrs EW!!!! That was a GREAT post!!! You did a GREAT job for your debut!!!

    I love the pineapple tips!!! YUM-ERS!!!! I had NO idea?!?!?! Salt?!?!?! Crazy!!!! I would have NEVER thought!!!! I’m going to try it this weekend for our Memorial day bash!!!! Woooooooooooo-Whoooooooooooooo!!!!

    Thank you and good luck!!!
    Let me know if you start your own blog!!!! =)

    Jeannie’s last blog post..Swimsuit Shopping

  8. Cathi says:

    Welcome to the blogging world Mrs. EW.
    Your garden is absolutely gorgeous! I’d so love to see more photos. Thank you very much for you post today on Kailani’s blog. When we lived in Florida we had several anthuriums in pots. I love them! I haven’t been able to find any since we’ve come back to CA. I do have apricots that will be ripe in the next week or so. I wish I could send you a box. Thank you again, you seem to be as much of a delight as your daughter is!
    I hope to hear more from you on An Island Life.

    Cathi’s last blog post..Too Many Apricots?

  9. Melissa says:

    I’m going to have to try that with the pineapple. My husband always dumps salt on his watermelon and cantelope. Makes me crazy but he says it brings out the flavor… maybe I should give it a shot?
    The flowers are BEAUTIFUL!!

  10. Christine says:

    Thankyou Mrs. EW for all the interesting information, and welcome to blogging.

    I just love your orchids and Anthiriums. That is one thing I had no idea, that it took so long for a pineapple to grow. That’s truly amazing.

    Great tip for sweeter pineapple. I’m going to have to try that.

    It’s been a pleasure reading your guest post. I’m looking forward to reading your next one.

  11. Angie says:

    Welcome to the blog, Mr. and Mrs. EW. Nice to have you here. Thank you for sharing this info. I love the orchid flowers in picture #5. They are my favorite!

    Angie’s last blog post..The Body Bakery: I’m a happy customer

  12. Dad of Divas says:

    Thanks for the update on the flowers. I know that there were definitely a few that I was wondering about. Thanks also for the tips on the fruits…I would never have thought of the trick with pineapple… look forward to trying it!

  13. annaliza says:

    THANK YOU and WELCOME “Mrs Earthworm”

    What a great post! You’ll be a great contribution to this, already WONDERFUL, blog!

    annaliza’s last blog post..Mahalo OO-KAH-LAY

  14. Richelle F says:

    Welcome to the blogging world, Mrs. EW. Thanks for explaining all the pictures. I wondered what some of those were.

    Richelle F’s last blog post..More Fun Mail

  15. VeRonda says:

    Hi Mrs. EW. Thanks for the explanations… I think the dancing ladies are my favorites. They’re so cute and flirty. My husband loves pineapples… wait until I tell him how long it takes for them to become full grown.

    VeRonda’s last blog post..The Remote Is Your Friend, Too

  16. Summer says:

    I love this post! I’m thinking your mom must be a terribly cute lady. I mean, she calls herself Mrs. Earthworm, how endearing is that? ;)

    Summer’s last blog post..The winner of American Idol is David?.

  17. grace says:

    Thanks for the garden tour. Well done on the blogging debut, Mrs. EW! I wish I could grow pineapples here in the desert too!

    grace’s last blog post..all about Harry

  18. Jessica says:

    THANK you for posting this! how about picking a ripe pineapple? how do you tell?

    it’s so exciting to visit your blog. our hawaiian vacation begins in ONE MONTH from YESTERDAY!

    Jessica’s last blog post..just for cuteness’ sake.

  19. Tara says:

    I really had no idea it took 18 months for a pineapple to grow… wow… I can’t imagine having such an incredibly long growing season. Ours is only 3 months long… from start to finish. I guess that’s why we don’t grow pineapples!

    Tara’s last blog post..Olivia rides again

  20. Birdie says:

    how fun…oh I’m so jealous! I just got an Anthurium for Mother’s day. I was born in Hawai’i and one of my Mom’s favorite pictures of me is with their Anthurium they always had on the kitchen table. She said alwyas loved that picture and wanted me to have one-now I do – BUT, I found out that she’s been mispronouncing it all these years! I didn’t tell her *wink*

  21. stampedwithgrace says:

    thanks so much for sharing! those are beautiful pictures!!
    we love pineapples, but the ones we get here in Oklahoma don’t compare to yours :(

    stampedwithgrace’s last blog post..Please Pray for the Chapman family

  22. Pamela says:

    I enjoyed my lesson.
    I take care of the plants in the office – as no one else seems to know what to do with them

    WE have an igthyrium – it looks like the little boy plant, but it is not so colorful.

    Pamela’s last blog post..Are there more out there?

  23. Sher :) says:

    Wow Mrs. Earthworm…sounds like you\’ve been blogging for years! :) Great job!
    Thanks for the wonderful education. I love the idea of growing a pineapple like you indicated. I think I might just have to do that.
    Welcome to the blogosphere! Hope to see you around a lot. Maybe you\’ll even start your own blog. :) But be careful….it can be addicting. lol

    Sher :) ’s last blog post..May Book Giveaway ~ I Care About You

  24. Jenny says:

    oh those are really pretty.

    Jenny’s last blog post..Strawberry Delight

  25. SeaBird says:

    Thanks for the pineapple tips! We eat a lot around here and I will try the salting mthod next time. We also have one growing in a pot on our patio!

    SeaBird’s last blog post..Favorites: bed, fort, and bookshelves

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