Tropical Gardening: New non-native specie found

Phenax hirtus is a tropical shrub that will grow rapidly to fifteen feet in height and can spread rapidly. It is originally from Central America. At first glance it looks like a small leafed version of mamake to which it is related. It is a pioneer specie that quickly invades areas sprayed with herbicide like along the forest reserve trails and in areas along roadsides where soil is exposed. Since Phenax is closely related to mamake, it may have some medicinal value.

Let’s Talk Food: Manners at the table

Knowing and understanding manners are important to know, but there are different rules in different countries. So when we are able to travel abroad again, let’s make sure we know what we can and cannot do at the table.

Volcano Watch: Ken Hon returns to HVO as Scientist-in-Charge

The next USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Scientist-in-Charge has been named, and it’s a name that Island of Hawaii residents may be familiar with — Dr. Ken Hon! Ken will be the 21st Scientist-in-Charge filling a position originally created by Thomas A. Jaggar, who founded HVO in 1912 and directed it until 1940.

Tropical Gardening: You are in trouble if you forget your valentine

Valentine’s Day is just upon us so it is important to tell your loved ones how much you care. Shopping for gifts during the pandemic is limiting our options. On the high end, some consider diamonds and on the low end, a cheap box of candy. Here in the islands, we have a living option that can be enjoyed for years without destroying our bank accounts or adding more pounds on what we weighed before the lockdown. Shopping at our local garden stores gives us plenty of room for fresh air and limited exposure to COVID-19. There are many plants that are perfect gifts at this time. The first ones that come to mind are anthuriums and orchids, but you may want to consider succulents and bromeliads for loved ones who may have slightly brown thumbs. However, don’t give a cactus or it might be misinterpreted as a negative. For those who have some room in the garden, consider fruit trees that can supply food for years to come, or a beautiful clumping bamboo. There are over 100 bamboos species grown in Hawaii from which to choose. If you use your imagination, the sky is the limit.

Volcano Watch: Kilauea’s south flank: What’s shaking?

This story begins after Kilauea’s May 4, 2018, M6.9 earthquake and lower East Rift Zone eruption. The M6.9 earthquake resulted in seaward motion at the surface of Kilauea’s south flank of up to approximately 0.5 m (1.5 ft) as measured by Global Positioning System monitoring stations operated by the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

Plein aire exhibit opens at Wailoa

Wailoa Center and the Hawaii Island Art Alliance welcome 41 artists from throughout the state invited to be part of the second annual Hawaii Statewide Juried Plein Aire Painting Exhibit, which opens today and runs through Feb. 25.

Officer honored for saving stabbing victim

Just one week after Hawaii Police Department received tourniquets as part of a grant from the Spirit of the Blue Foundation, Sgt. Ryan Pagan saved the life of a man who was stabbed in Puna last fall.

Let’s Talk Food: Breakfast is king

If we live by the phrase “eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a queen and dinner like a pauper,” our breakfast should be the biggest meal of the day. After all, breakfast is “a break from a fast.”