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Hedyotis fluviatilis
Alternative Botanical Names
Kadua fluviatilis
Kadua kamapuaana

Common Names
Potential or Traditional Uses
Lei (Flower or Seed)
No photo currently available
Hedyotis fluviatilis is a small climbing shrub. The 3-sided stems are 1 to 8 feet long with short side branches. The leaves have a papery texture. They are longer than they are wide and range in size from 3 to 6 1/2 inches long with a width of 1 to 2 inches. The plant has an unpleasant odor when bruised.

The flowers of Hedyotis fluviatilis are waxy white and trumpet shaped. They are fairly large with each flower being about 3/4 to 1 inch long and almost 3/4 in diameter. The flowers grow in clusters where the leaves join the stems. (Wagner 1990)

Habitat and Geographic Range
Hedyotis fluviatilis is a rare endemic shrub. It grows in moist to wet forests at elevations ranging from 160 to almost 4,000 ft. It occurs on Kaua'i and on O'ahu in the Ko'olau Mountains from Pupukea to Manoa. (Wagner 1990)
Propagation by Seeds
The fruit of Hedyotis fluviatilis is a woody capsule about 3/8 to 1/2 inch in diameter. It is more or less round, but with four flattened sides. When it matures, it opens up along its seams. The seeds are translucent reddish brown and wedge shaped.

Lilleeng-Rosenberger's notes document work with seeds of other endemic Hawaiian Hedyotis species. For fresh, untreated seeds of Hedyotis acuminata, she obtained a germination rate of 72%. With untreated seeds of Hedyotis terminalis that had been stored for 1 month, she obtained a germination percentage of 60%. The fruits of Hedyotis acuminata are woody capsules like those of Hedyotis fluviatilis. The fruit of Hedyotis terminalis are fleshy. The seeds of both of these species were sown on the surface of a moistened medium consisting of 3 parts perlite to 1 part Sunshine Mix #4.

In his germination studies, Obata found that untreated seeds of Hedyotis species had germination rates ranging from 30 to 75%. In work by Yoshinaga (1997), fresh seed of another Hawaiian species (Hedyotis terminalis) had a germination rate of 75%. Storage at room temperature or with desiccated silica gel greatly decreased the germination rate. However, the seeds retained a germination rate of 73% for over 2 years when stored in at 40 degrees F with an ambient relative humidity of 20-30%. (Lilleeng-Rosenberger 1996; Obata 1967; Wagner 1990; Yoshinaga 1997)

Propagation by Cuttings
Lilleeng-Rosenberger's notes show a 60% rooting rate for cuttings treated with Hormex #1. She notes that the larger cuttings were the ones that rooted. The cuttings took 3 months to root. (Lilleeng-Rosenberger 1996)
Propagation by Division
Not applicable.
Propagation by Air Layers
No information located to date.
Propagation by Grafting
No information located to date.
Propagation by Tissue Culture
No information located to date.
Lilleeng-Rosenberger, Kerin. 1996. Plant propagation notebook. Unpublished materials: National Tropical Botanical Garden.

Obata, John K. 1967. Seed germination in native Hawaiian plants. Newsletter of the Hawaiian Botanical Society 6 (3):13-20.

Wagner, Warren L., Darrel R. Herbst, and S. H. Sohmer. 1990. Manual of the flowering plants of Hawai'i. 2 vols., Bishop Museum Special Publication 83. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press and Bishop Museum Press. p. 1142-1144.

Yoshinaga, Alvin Y., Marie Lau, and Rosa Lum. 1997. Storing seeds of native Hawaiian rainforest plants. Newsletter of the Hawaiian Botanical Society 36 (3/4):66-68.

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Last updated:
1 September 2001

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