Laau Hawaii: Traditional Hawaiian Uses of Plants


Isabella Aiona Abbott

Softcover, 176 pp.

Preeminent Hawaiian ethnobotanist, Dr. Isabella Aiona Abbott (1919–2010), assembled this comprehensive collection of chapters on the traditional Hawaiian uses of plants. Intended for a general audience, this book provides the first comprehensive description of Hawaiian plant use. It shows how Hawaiian cultivated and used plants for food, clothing, shelter, transport and tools, as well as religion and recreation. There is a chapter dedicated to the staple crops, kalo and ‘uala, as well as a chapter titles “Food Plants from Aquatic Sources,” on limu, Dr. Abbott’s area of expertise. As a multifaceted reference, Lā‘au Hawai‘i is a great tool to anyone interested in Hawaiian plants and culture. For easy reference, an index lists each plant, its proportion, and its principal use; numerous photographs illustrate both plants and crafts.