Loulu palm, or Pritchardia, is the only native Hawaiian palm genus. It is useful for its large fronds, a shield from the sun and rain, as well as for weaving items such as hats. Its fruit, hāwane, once were considered delicious to eat. Unfortunately, rats that arrived for the first time to the islands with the first Polynesian canoes also loved the fruit of this palm. Once a dominant forest species, a thousand years of rats eating most of their seeds resulted in scattered remnant populations of these formerly ubiquitous palms.
One species, Pritchardia hillebrandii, is featured in this print. An islet off the coast of Moloka'i has an untouched strand of this particular blue-green palm species, giving a sense of what a forest of loulu would look like.