One of the rare and important qualities of the ‘Ohi‘a Tree is that it can grow in proximity to the toxic gases of volcanic lava flows. It is one of the first plants that begin the colonization process after a new lava flow has hardened.
This affinity for the tree to the landscape of volcanoes ties the tree to the lore of Pele, goddess of volcanoes. In one tale, Pele fell in love with a youth named ‘Ohi‘a, but he loved a woman, Lehua. In a fit of jealousy and anger at the rejection, Pele turned him into a tree. The other gods took pity upon Lehua for her loss, and transformed her into a flower for the ‘Ohi‘a tree.
Size: 7 x 7 inches