Hawai‘i Strategy for Plant Conservation

wiliwili_seedsHawai‘i is home to some of the most unique and diverse ecosystems on our planet. Yet these ecosystems are also among the most threatened of any in the world, with hundreds of native plant species in danger of extinction.


The Hawai‘i Strategy for Plant Conservation (Strategy), completed in 2014, describes an emerging effort to coordinate and prioritize actions that reduce threats to native plants species. The Strategy is built on a statewide assessment of capacity and needs for ex situ conservation and aligned with global conservation goals. Fifteen organizations contributed feedback to develop the Strategy, which promotes a collective vision and lays out a framework to progress toward common goals.


The Strategy called for the establishment of the Laukahi Network, an emerging effort to formalize coordination and increased impact on conservation goals. Laukahi – translated as “single leaf” in the Hawaiian language – is our effort to unite our work and respond to urgent threats to native plants and our island ecosystems. The network aims to convene and coordinate conservation programs across our islands to implement the Strategy.


Phase 1 of the Strategy focuses on ex situ conservation efforts, including building capacity and increasing the quality and quantity of collections at seed banks, botanical gardens, nurseries and other facilities working to prevent plant extinction.


Heightened coordination and a statewide conservation strategy can stem the ever-mounting threats to Hawai‘i’s native plants and the ecosystems they inhabit. Strengthening relationships within Hawai‘i and connecting with the global conservation movement to increase the quality, efficiency and the ultimate impact of conservation efforts in our islands. With greater collaboration, we can protect our unique native plants and their habitats for many generations to come.