Nä I'a















Pūpū Kōlea



limu kohu

limu kohu

limu kohu

Ka Hana



limu kala



limu akiaki

Pilina Kai






" Ka i'a lauoho loloa o ke kai "

The long haired fish of the sea

('Ōlelo No'eau 1368)


There are over 100 limu identified by our kūpuna. Limu is a food source for other fish and us, it provides a home on the shoreline and on reef systems, and has many other functions that contribute to a healthy environment.

The varieties on this page are just a few of the many growing on our shorelines.

Limu Kohu (pictured on the left column) is a favorite limu of our kūpuna and my family. Growing in rough water, limu kohu can be treacherous to harvest. When harvesting, cut the limu leaving the "roots" behind. Do not pull them off the reef.

Limu Kala (pictured on the top right column) is abundantly found on rocky shorelines. I have noticed it growing seasonally in tidepools on cliffy shorelines during the surf season. It is said to be 'ono eaten with fish wrapped in ti-leaf and cooked over coals lāwalu style. It was also commonly used in healing used to treat illnesses that needed forgiving - kala means to forgive.

Limu 'Aki'aki (pictured on the Bottom right column) grows on basalt rocks and shorelines. On rough shorelines, it tends to grow because fish cannot access the limu in the extreme rough water. Limu 'aki'aki was eaten by chopping very fine and seasoning meats cooked in the imu. A source does say that humans did not eat this limu but it may be a regional practice. Other names for this limu are Kō'ele'ele (Kaua'i), 'Eleau (Maui), Awikiwiki (Maui), and 'Aki'aki kō'ele'ele (Hawai'i).