All this knowledge at your fingertips

‘Ōno kāhi ‘ao lū‘au me ke aloha pū. ‘Olelo No‘eau 2523

A little taro green is delicious when love is present. Or, even the plainest food is ‘ono when there is love.


This website is based on the work of kalo farmers. In 1939, three faculty from the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR), set out to meet these farmers and document the varieties before they disappeared. Credit goes to CTAHR faculty F. A. I. Bowers, M. Takahashi and Leo. D. Whitney, and to the Hawaiian farmers they interviewed across the Islands. The taro research led to the publication of Taro Varieties in Hawaii (Hawaii Agricultural Experiment Station - Bulletin 84).

If history could be re-written, the authors of Bulletin 84 ought to have included the names of all the kupuna they interviewed, so credit and respect could be paid to the mahi 'ai who perpetuated kalo in the fields. It is our responsibility to carry the 'ike forward.

This site’s kalo photos were taken at botanical collections across Hawaii. On O‘ahu: at Waimea Valley Botanical Garden, Waimanalo Agricultural Station, Kanewai Garden, Hui Kū Maoli Ola Native Hawaiian Plant Specialists, and Kaipo‘i Kelling’s hale. On Maui: at Kahanu Gardens and Maui Nui Botanical Gardens and Penny Levin's lo‘i and māla. On Hawai'i Island: UH CTAHR Agriculture Experiment Station - Puna and Jerry Konanui's māla. On Kaua‘i: at Limahuli Garden. On Moloka‘i: UH CTAHR Agriculture Experiment Station - Alton Arakaki's collection.

Special thanks to Jerry Konanui, Penny Levin, Dale Evans and Kaipo‘i Kelling. Respect goes to Uncle Eddie Ka‘anānā, Kupuna Mary Kawena Pukui, and Coach David Eldredge. As educators, their lessons about Hawaiian culture, our community, science and the environment offer a path to improve our lives here and now. Mahalo to Janice Yap for bringing the mea‘ai of the world to the table.

Thanks and credit goes to these people for their influence and inspiration. It is their work and ideas that motivate:

Kēhaunani Abad, PhD

Michi Atkinson

Aunty Valerie Baldovi

Duffy Chang

Martha Cheng

Father Damien of Moloka

‘iJonathan & Malia Deenik

Kealoha & Claire Domingo

Jon Duarte Design Group (JDDG)

Laurie Dunn

Dr. Lois Englberger

Meredith Desha-Enos

Treebeard the Ent

Dr. Carl Evensen

Phil Giles

Dean Hirahara

John Heckathorn

John 21:15-17, “Feed my lambs.”

KAHEA: The Hawaiian-Environmental Alliance

Kamehameha Publishing

Elise Karr

Kaipo‘i & Ivy Kelling

Dr. Angela Kay Kepler

Mike Ketover

Brian Kirschenmann

Mark Kostka

Narciso Kostka

William Kostka

Jerry & Gladys Konanui

Theresa Krief

Aunty Ah Jook Ku

Penny Levin

Adelino Lorens

Nikki Love

Mike Maciszewski

Marion Lyman Mersereau, author of Eddie Wen' Go

Randolph Moore

Nainoa Thompson

Dr. Kenneth Otagaki

Office of Hawaiian Affairs

Chef Philippe Padovani

Sarah Parker

Michael Pollan

Scott Radway

William Raynor

Leilei Shih

J.R.R. Tolkien

Ben Trevino

Troop 10 - Kaimuki, Boy Scouts of America

Dr. Nicolai Vavilov

Lory Walker - Peroff

Kealoha Wong

Trisha Kehaulani Watson

Alia Yap

Janice Yap

Willis Yap

Juanita Kukeauopualani

Road to Hana, 2009. Left to Right: Weston Yap, Duffy Chang, Kala Domingo, Kealoha Domingo, Kaipo‘i Kelling, ‘A‘ali‘i Kelling, Gladys Konanui, Jerry Konanui and Penny Levin.