Common Name
Cup of Gold

Hawaiian Name

Scientific Name
Solandra maxima


Between Kalama and Kaiona

Whole Plant



Flower Bud

Location On Campus

 If you stand in front of Kalama dining hall facing the ocean, the plant is located over the rock wall between Kalama and Kaiona.

Natural Habitat

This plant is grown in yards, parks, and hotel grounds. It is found growing along the Tantalus-Round Top Loop. Solandra maxima grows from seaside gardens to low mountains, in rainforest or in the open with partial shade to full sun.

Cultural Information

Solandra maxima was introduced to Hawai‘i as an ornamental plant. It is native to Mexico, Central America and Northern South America. There is no information on uses by Hawaiian people but this plant was used in sacred ceremonies in Mexico because of the hallucinogenic properties.

Plant Description


  •  Dense and woody rope like stems root at the nodes


  • Run for more than 60 m
  • Can be shaped into a climbing plant,clipped box hedge , or a clumpy mass


  •  Large, glossy
  • Simple leaves.
  • About 5 cm long leathery feel and an oval shape
  • Midribs are lighter in color
  • Petioles are 7.5 cm long


  • Large flowers bloom in January, February, and March
  • Shaped like a chalice, 15 to 25 cm across at the opening
  • Starts out yellow and turns deeper gold as it ages
  • Five lobes of the corolla marked with a purplish brown line inside


  •  Rarely see berries
  • Abut 5 cm in diameter and fleshy
  • Not edible

Life Cycle/

  •  Grows best with regular water
  • blooms best when water is given to it a little at a time


  •  Grows easily from slip or stem cuttings in the summer
  • Stems root at their nodes 
  • Can grow on trellises

Interesting Facts:

  • Best for seaside gardens, tolerant of salty sprays and soils
  • Listed as one of Hawaii's most in invasive horticultural plants
  • There are 8 species of chalice vines, One of he most common species in cultivation
  • Fast growing to 25 cm a season

Web Site Links

Solandra Maxima

This website will show you a picture of the flower with more information.

Pacific Island Ecosystem at Risk: Solandra maxima

This site shows additional information and show more pictures.

Ecology & Evolutionary Biology Conservatory: Solandra maxima

This site had general information about the plant.



Baldwin, Ph.D., Roger E. Hawaii's Poisonous Plants. Hilo: Petroglyph Press, 1981.

 Denger, B.S., M.S., Scd., Otto. Flora Hawaiiensis or new Illustrated flora of the Hawaiian Islands. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1967.

Hawai'i's Most Invasive Horticultural Plants-Cup of Gold. Department of Land & Natural Resources. 05 Mar. 2003.

Hawai'i's Most Invasive Horticultural Plants-An Introduction. Department of Land & Natural Resources. 04 Mar. 2003.

 Hodge, Peggy Hickok. Tropical Gardening; Handbook for the Home Gardener. Rutland: Charles E. Tuttle Company: Publishers.

 Neal, Marie C. In gardens of Hawaii. Honolulu: Bishop Museum press, 1965.

 Pratt, Ph.D., H. Douglas. A Pocket guide to Hawaii's Trees and Shrubs. Baton Rouge: Museum of Natural Science, LSU, 1998.

Solandra Maxima - Chalice Vine. Gardino Nursery Corporation. 06 Mar. 2003.

Solandra Maxima. Clinton Morse, Plant Growth Facility Manager. 30 Jan. 2003. Ecology and Revolutionary Biology Conservatory and Gardens. 04 Mar. 2003.

Solandra maxima. Jim Space, Editor. 20 Oct. 2000. U.S. Forest Service's Institute of Pacific Islands Forestry. 04 Mar. 2003. http://www.hear. org/pier/somax.htm.

Solandra maxima. John Scheper, Publisher. 15 Dec.2000. Floridata. 05 Mar. 2003

Teho, Fortunato. Plants of Hawaii how to grow them. Hilo: Petroglyph Press, 1992.

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