slow growing with spread 8-20’ Hawaiian Tree Fern is a very slow growing shrub-like fern, adding only an inch per year in height. The underside of the leaves is a pale blue-green in color.
Early Hawaiians boiled and ate the young uncoiled frond. The starchy core of the trunk was saved for ‘famine food’, where the trunk could be baked in an imu oven. The woolly material, the pulu, around the base of the fronds was used extensively as a medicinal dressing. The over harvesting of this pulu seriously damaged the native forests.