Common Name
Red 'Ilima

Hawaiian Name

Scientific Name
Abutilon menziesii


Whole Plant



Location On Campus

 The Ko‘oloa‘ula is found in front of the girls dorm by Keawe.


Natural Habitat

 This plant lives in the dry forests on Lana‘i, East Maui, and Hawai‘i. It lives in elevations about 650-1700 m. They are also found in dry, steep, eroded valleys and slopes. It can also be found along washed out gullies.

Cultural Information

Abutilon menziesii is an endemic plant. It is endangered. It came from the abutilon, or Indian Malow. It is protected by the U.S. government.

Plant Description


  • Nitrogen fixing roots


  • Bush with a woody stem that supports that plant
  • Grows straight up into the air
  • Ranges from 91 cm-182 cm (3-6 feet)
  • Thin and some what straggly stem
  • Has a thin diameter
  • Light brown in color with a rough texture on the bark
  • It is a dicot


  • Simple leaf
  • Cordate venation
  • Serrate margins
  • Size ranges from 3-10 cm long
  • Silvery-green color
  • Fuzzy and yet a smooth texture


  • Colored maroon pink and yellow in the center
  • Staminal column is yellow
  • Base is in the shape of a bell
  • Velvety texture
  • Born in the base of the leaves
  • 2.5-3.5 cm long


  • Dry Capsule, two-valved
  • 3 to 9 seeded carpels, radiating


  • Found in capsules
  • 18-24 small seeds in each capsule
  • Dark brown in color
  • 2-2.5 mm


  • Carpenter Bees
  • Honey Bees
  • Native Bees (Nesoprosopis)


Propagation by:

  • Cuttings
  • Seeds
  • Air Layers 

Other Interesting Facts:

Threats include:

  • Chinese Rose Beetles
  • Rats
  • Alien species
  • Loss of Pollinators

Web Site Links

 Ko`oloa`ula - Abutilon menziesii (end)

This website contains pictures and information on the Ko‘oloa‘ula

 Plants: abutilon menziesii plant profile

This site contains extensive information on the Ko‘oloa‘ula



Abutilon menziesii plant profile. Center for Plant Conservation. March 13 2003. <>

Neal, Marie. In Gardens of Hawai'i. Honolulu: Bishop Museum, 1965.

Plants:abutilon Menziesii plant profile. College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Recourses University of Hawai‘i at Manoa. March 13 2003. <>

The Elusive Red 'Ilima is Easy to Grow if You Can Find it. Honolulu Advertiser. March 13, 2003. <>

Wagner, Warren and Derral R. Herbask and S.H. Sohmer. Flowering Plants of Hawai'i. Honolulu: Bishop Museum, 1999.

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