Kalo Varieties

Which variety of Kalo is the best? The one that's in the bowl on the table. - Jeremy Konanui, Hawaiian Mahiai

Mana Uliuli


Mana Uliuli: Introduced from South Seas under the name Yellow, which referred to the color of the ‘i‘o kalo (Corm) flesh; it has since heen classified as a Mana taro and given the descriptive name Uliuli because of the dark olive-green hā (Petiole). Uli is a dark color.


Makes good poi of distinctly yellow color. The taro has excellent quality as a table taro. The Mana and the Lauloa taros are used in preference to all others for making the Hawaiian pudding kūlolo, a combination of grated taro and coconut milk.


Limited; grown primarily under upland, dryland culture (māla).


Medium in height, erect, moderately stocky, maturing within 9 to 12 months; the most striking character is prolific branching, as many as ten branches often being produced.


70 to 95 cm. long, olive-green tinged with reddish-brown and pink; the pinkish color is distinct near the kōhina (base), lilac-purple at apex, with a broad, light pink to whitish edge along the stem, white at kōhina (base) with lilac pink for 1 to 2 cm. above.


35 to 45 cm. long, 20 to 30 cm. wide, 25 to 35 cm, from tip to base of sinus (māwae), vertical, firm-chartaceous (this means paper like), arrow head shaped, dark green; piko yellowish; round leaf section (lobes) acute with white lihi māwae (sinus).


Flesh yellow with light yellowish fibers; skin cream colored, dark purple along leaf-scar rings.


Produced rather profusely; Hā (peduncle) light green flecked with reddish-brown; flower cover (spathe) small, delicate, narrow, 12 to 16 cm. long, the lower tubular portion 2 to 2.5 cm. long, light green, the upper portion tightly rolled, light yellow; spadix (spike of flower) rather delicate, 6 to 9 cm. long, the sterile appendage (tip of flower's spike) 4 to 8 mm. long.


Because of excessive branching, the shape of the ‘i‘o kalo (Corm) is very irregular. This South Sea introduction variety is desirable for poi. The ‘i‘o kalo (Corm) are similar to those of the Kai group, being tough and rubbery when cooked.

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*The # refers to CTAHR's bulletin 84 system.