Hawaiian:     ‘Ūlei, eluehe, u’ulei

English:        Hawaiian Rose

Latin:            Osteomeles Anthyllidifolia

FAMILY:      Rosaceae

STATUS:    Indigenous


A crawling shrub, sometimes erect to 3 meters tall. Growing from sea level to 2,320 meters on all Hawaiian Islands.

Flowers: White clusters, slightly fragrant.

Leaves: Approximately 2-7cm long, leaflets 15-25, oblong-elliptic, glossy upper surface.


The wood was used as a spear for fishing, it was also one of the components for making the musical bow ‘ukeke, the larger pieces were used to make o‘o or digging stick.  The berries were used sometimes as a purple dye when the fruit was overripe. ‘Ūlei was listed as a farming tool.  Also ‘Ūlei was used with other plants as lei.  Hawaiians also played a sport called javelin.  Most javelins were made from ‘Ūlei and Kauila.  ‘Ūlei spears were the favorite of Kamehameha II, he said that it was always the most accurate.