Hayley here with an update on what we’ve been up to the past couple of weeks with our plant restoration project at Kapapapuhi Point Park. In the preliminary stages of our research I was able to find a Cultural Impact Assessment done in April of 2011 for the Honouliuli ahupua’a where Kapapapuhi Point Park is located. Within the assessment I found information on soil types – the West Loch area was found to contain deep and poorly drained soils, most of which had previously been used in agriculture to cultivate crops such as taro, bananas, and sugar cane. This led to the idea of conducting soil tests at different areas of the park to determine which Native Hawaiian plant species would best fit present conditions.
Kaitlyn collected samples from different areas of Kapapapuhi and her and Daniel analyzed the samples’ pH levels and the presence of nutrients such as phosphorus, ammonium, and nitrate. Salinity levels were also measured because of the fluctuation in water level that occurs in the area with the change in tides.
With the data we’ve compiled we’ve begun to take a look at which plants are best fit for the soil and weather conditions in the park. Salinity and drought tolerance as well as pH levels are all factors that must be taken into consideration.
Restoration of native ecosystems is not an easy task and can take years to accomplish. However, we are inspired and motivated by the process and the understanding that this opportunity has allowed us to become part of something much bigger than ourselves. We’re definitely looking forward to compiling our final project!
‘A‘ohe hana nui ke alu ‘ia. No task is too big when done together by all.
– Hayley Luke