When we think of Hawaii, our minds almost immediately think of lush and colorful landscapes, nature, and tropical waters.
Home to some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world, Hawaii is easily one of the most nature-rich places in America.
Thanks to its tropical climate, the island state is home to a huge range of gorgeous tropical flowers.
In fact, there are more than 1,400 different types of flowers native to Hawaii, with almost 90% of them being found nowhere else in the world.
As a result, there’s a good chance you’ll find flowers you’ve never seen before in Hawaii. Today, we want to give you a rundown of the very best, the most unique, and the prettiest.
To do that, we’ve listed 13 beautiful types of flowers you’ll find in Hawaii. If you want to learn more about what Hawaii has to offer in terms of plant life, stay tuned!
1. Bird Of Paradise
The first flower on this list isn’t only found in Hawaii but it’s arguably the most unique and impressive flower on the island.
An iconic tropical flower, the bird of paradise, known scientifically as Strelizia reginae is actually native to South Africa.
Extremely vibrant, this flower is multicolored. It is commonly found in red, blue, purple, and orange colors. It gets its name from its unique appearance which makes it look like a species of bird.
That species of bird is unsurprisingly called birds of paradise.
Despite being fairly easy to grow, the haha flower is rarely seen in cultivation. This flowering shrub is however common in its natural habitat. You’ll usually find it growing in elevations between 150 to 2,500 feet in wet forests.
The haha flower is only found in Hawaii. Most commonly found in the Ko-olau Mountains, this shrub can grow up to 10 feet tall.
It blooms sporadically throughout the year, blooming bell-like flowers that are pink, white, and purple in color.
Moving onto a more vibrant flower, mamane is another flower that can only be found in Hawaii.
Known scientifically as Sophora chrysophylla, this flower grows on a tall shrub that can grow into a tall tree that reaches heights of 50 feet.
Part of the bean and pea family, this shrub blooms charming and cheery bright yellow flowers that look similar to some varieties of orchid flowers. This is a hard flower to spot in Hawaii as it is currently endangered.
Some Hawaiian flowers are so beautiful that they have their very own myths and legends.
A great example of a flower that has a magical story is the naupaka. This tropical flower is believed to have originated from a fisherman and princess that fell in love at first sight.
The two lovers couldn’t be together so as they parted, they tore the flower in half. As a result, the naupaka flower is believed to represent eternal love. Today, it is used as a symbol of commitment and faithfulness.
This flower is easy to spot as it has a unique half-flower appearance and bright white and yellow petals.
The plumeria flower was actually introduced to Hawaii in 1860 by a German botanist. Ever since it has been one of the most beautiful flowers on the island.
Iconic in some parts of Hawaii, this plant features velvety, soft, and vibrant flowers that have a divine fragrance.
This sweet scent and vibrance have made the flower popular across the island when it comes to wearing a flower that indicates relationship status. This flower is usually white, yellow, and pink in color.
Next up, we have the pikake flower. Pikake is actually the Hawaiian name for Jasmine. Once favored by Hawaiian royalty, this flower was actually named after Princess Kaiulani’s favorite bird which was the peacock.
The scent of this flower is interestingly one of Hawaii’s most popular scents. Usually, the flower buds are used as decoration as opposed to the bloomed flowers. Small, delicate, and white in color, the buds are worn by hula dancers and brides.
When the flower does bloom, it maintains its bright white color.
The alulu flower is sometimes referred to as the Aka Aka Aka flower. It belongs to the Begoniaceae family which consists of two genera. Those being Hillebrandia and Begonia.
Hillebrandia only consists of one species, which happens to be the alulu. What’s interesting about this flower is that it is Hawaii’s only relict plant. That means it has kept its primitive form.
Blooming between February and June, this flower has small pink and white petals. The flower tends to grow in ravines. It is most commonly found in Kauai, Molokai, and Maui.
Heliconia is one of the larger tropical flowers found on Hawaii. It is incredibly vibrant and eye-catching so there’s a good chance you won’t miss it if it’s nearby.
There are a number of different heliconia species found on the island but the most common variety is known by the name Lobster Claws.
This species of heliconia actually originates in South and Central America. It is most recognizable for its tall upright flowers and drooping blooms.
It gets the name Lobster Claws from its bright red flowers that bizarrely look like a lobster’s claws.
Despite the strange link, this flower is quite stunning.
The hinahina flower is beautiful in a different kind of way. This flower is more beautiful because it has a more unique appearance. This large, yet delicate flower has green leaves similar to that found on a succulent plant.
The flower that blooms on this plant is used in leis which is a type of Hawaiian wreath. In many ways, this flower looks a lot like a piece of coral that we would find in a coral reef. In fact, that makes a lot of sense as the flower is usually found on beaches.
The hinahina flower is named after Hina, a Hawaiian goddess.
There’s a very good chance you’ve never seen the koki’o flower before. The reason for this is that the flower is virtually extinct in the wild now. In fact, it’s widely believed that the flower now only grows on a cultivated plant.
This is a real shame because this flower is incredibly beautiful. It has the most amazing vibrant red petals that share their appearance with a tropical-looking hibiscus plant. Unfortunately, this flower was last seen in the wild in the 1990s.
11. Ohe ‘Ohe
Belonging to the Araliaceae family, the ohe ‘ohe flower has to be one of the most dazzling flowers found in Hawaii. Native to Hawaii, this flower is an endemic plant species that grows on Kauai.
Listed as critically endangered, the plant on which this flower grows is very rare to find in the wild. At one stage, it was thought to be extinct in the wild but it was rediscovered in the 1960s.
The ohe ‘ohe flowers hang on long rope-like strands from a 25-foot tall tree. They bloom in clusters of small, bright pink, yellow, and white petals.
One of the more common Hawaiian flowers you might not have seen before is the anthurium flower. This flower is found in abundance all over the island. It blooms throughout the year so you have a great chance of spotting it.
Also known as the Heart of Hawaii flower, this bright pink, red, and yellow flower takes the shape of a heart. It is another gorgeous Hawaiian flower that can be used to symbolize love and commitment.
13. Ohia Lehua
The final Hawaiian flower on this list is the ohia lehua flower. This is a hardy, vibrant flower endemic to the Hawaiian islands.
There are actually five species of this flower found in Hawaii but the red lehua flower is the most popular.
In fact, the red lehua is the official flower of Hawaii Island. The red, spiky-looking flower that adorns the ohia lehua plant is used in leis or for decorating hula altars.
This flower also has an interesting history that is linked to a Hawaiian legend and volcano goddess Pele.
That concludes this post looking at the most beautiful types of flowers in Hawaii you may not have seen.
Now you’ve made your way through our list, you should know a lot more about the most beautiful flowers found on the Hawaiian islands.
As you can see from our list, Hawaii is blessed with a wide range of gorgeous tropical flowers. We’ve barely even scraped the surface with our list, but we’ve been able to introduce you to a small piece of Hawaii’s flora.
Now you know more about Hawaii’s plant life, make sure you keep your eyes peeled next time you visit the island.