Hibiscadelphus distans, Hibiscus brackenridgei, H. kiokio ssp.saintjohnianus, H. clayi
Listings: Endangered, Federal Endangered Species Act, Hibiscus clayi, H. brackenridgei, and Hibiscadelphus distans; Species of concern, Federal Endangered species Act, Hibiscus kokio ssp. Saintjohnianus
The Plant’s Story
Hawaii is home to some of the most beautiful native members of the cotton family (Malvaceae). The ones pictured here are also some of the most endangered. Hibiscus clayi, (lower left) one of Kauai’s rarest. H. brackenridgei, (upper right) is uncommon but found throughout the archipelago. H. kokio ssp. Saintjohnianus (lower right) is a beautiful yellowish orange rarity known only from a few locations in northwestern Kauai. Hibiscadelphus distans (upper left) is an endangered cousin with a tiny population in Kauai’s spectacular Waimea Canyon. All these rare native flowering shrubs are struggling in the wild, but thrive in the living collections of the National Tropical Botanical Garden. (courtesy of Dr. David Burney, Director of Conservation, Living Collections and Horticulture NTBG)
The Artist’s Story: Wendy Hollender
In February of 2008 I spent a month in Hawaii. While there I hoped to work on a series on endangered plants for consideration in this exhibition. I spent a week doing field sketches of these and other endangered plants and began these four drawings, which I completed back in New York.
More of the plant’s story and the artist’s story can be found in the exhibit catalog, available at the exhibition venues or online from the ASBA.