Koki‘o (Arnottianus)


Hawaiian:     Koki‘o, ke‘oke‘o, hau hele, koki‘o kea, pūmakani

English:        Hibiscus

Latin:            Hibiscus arnottianus

FAMILY:      Malvaceae

STATUS:    Endemic


Shrub or small tree up to 8 meters tall. This shrub grows near the ocean up to 100-800 meters in elevation. One of five white hibiscus.

Flowers: Large white petals with dark pink stamen. Flowers have a very slight pink blush prior to opening.  

Leaves: Shiny green with deep maroon veins, similar in color to Māmaki leaves


There are five varieties of native white hibiscus.

According to oral history, Hibiscus Arnottianus was used in Hana Aloha.  This was a courting ritual.  After the missionaries arrived this practice was banned.