From Common Forest Trees of Hawaii

Morella faya
Wax Myrtle family (Myricaceae)

Post-Cook introduction

introduced shrub or small tree, with many narrowly elliptical leaves, twigs and leaf surfaces with brown or yellow dot visible under a lens, and many dark red to blackish more than 1⁄4 inch (6 ) in diameter. Shrub or small tree to 40 feet (12 ) high and 10 inches (25 ) in trunk diameter. Bark brown to gray, smooth or becoming slightly fissured, inner bark greenish yellow, bitter. Twigs greenish, angled, with raised half-round leaf scars.

Forest And Kim Starr
Leaves many, crowded, hairless, thin, narrowly elliptical, 1 1⁄4–4 1⁄2 inches (3–11 ) long, 3⁄8–3⁄4 inch (1–2 ) wide, short-pointed at widest beyond middle, tapering to base and slender leafstalk about 1⁄4 inch (6 ) long, edges slightly turned down and often wavy above slightly shiny dark green, beneath dull green with veins slightly raised.

Flower clusters (spikes) at leaf bases, 1⁄2–1 1⁄4 inches (1.3–3 ) long, unbranched. Flowers are many, stalkless, minute, male and female on the same plant (), without or each above a Male flowers are 3⁄16 inch (5 ) long, with four pinkish tinged Female flowers often joined together in groups of three above a

() many, stalkless along slender unbranched axes 3⁄4–2 1⁄4 inches (2–6 ) mostly back of leaves, round, more than 1⁄4 inch (6 ) in diameter, turning from greenish to dark red to blackish; the surface with many tiny round bead-like flesh reddish, almost tasteless. Seed single, brown, rounded, more than 1⁄8 inch (3 ) diameter.

Introduced into Hawaii as an ornamental probably by Portuguese settlers, who made wine from the and now naturalized in moist areas throughout the islands. It is especially common in the pasture land above the town of Paauilo on the Hamakua Coast of Hawaii. Also present and spreading at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and on the fringes of the Alakai Swamp, Kauai, where it was planted in 1927 and again in 1940. Almost all plantings were made by the Division of Forestry in 1926 and 1927. Since 1940, it has been considered one of Hawaii’s most plants. A nitrogen fixer, it has the ability to take over the best pasture land by forming dense thickets. An active eradication program is underway but is a continuing struggle with the present system of poisoning and uprooting.

Special areas
Kokee, Volcanoes

Native of Azores and Canary Islands

Other common names
firetree, fayabush, firebush

Morella faya (Aiton) Wilbur

An evergreen tree retains a large portion of its green leaves all year.

stamen -- the pollen-producing reproductive organ of a flower; The stamen consists of an anther supported by a filament.

scale -- A very small leaf around a dormant bud. Also other things that might remind one of fish scales on the surface of ferns, stems and the like.

synonym -- In botany a synonym is a species name that at one time was thought to be the correct name for a plant but was later found to be incorrect and has been replaced by a new name.

cm -- A centimeter which is about 0.4 inches.

mm -- millimeter. About 1/25th of an inch.

corolla -- The name for all the petals of a flower taken together.

alternate -- leaves alternate along the main stem and are attached singly.

calyx -- the sepals of a flower, typically forming a whorl that encloses the petals and forms a protective layer around a flower in bud.

m -- A meter is about 10% larger than a yard.

A noxious weed is considered to be harmful to the environment or animals. Often a governing body designates plants as noxious.

The apex is the tip or the furthest point from the attachment.

Like the teeth on a saw, leaves and other surfaces can have toothed edges.

fruit -- any seed-bearing structure in flowering plants. It is formed from the ovary after flowering.

drupe -- A fruit in which an outer fleshy part surrounds a hardened shell containing a seed. A peach is a drupe. A raspberry is composed of drupelets.

monoecious -- all flowers have both sexes; or both sexes in different flowers on the same plant.