Pareu | Hōlei - dark green
100% Organic cotton | Organic dye | Designed in Hawaiʻi | Made in the USA | Dimensions: 70" long x 44" wide
I ka honi mua ʻana i ke ʻala huʻihuʻi hoʻohihi wale o ka hōlei, ma laila i kuni paʻa ʻia ai ke aloha no Auwahi i loko o ka naʻau, a he aloha pili paʻa hemo ʻole nō ia. Ake ihola nō e hō aku i ka lei onaona lua ʻole o ka ʻaoʻao kona i ka pūkonakona e kau ai ka maka. ʻIʻini ihola nō hoʻi e mehana ka ʻili i ke kīhei hōlei hiehie i ʻike ʻia ma nā moʻolelo kūpuna. A ʻo ka ʻehaʻeha o loko i ka hiki ʻole ke hoʻokō ʻia aku ia mau moemoeā, no ke kākaʻikahi hoʻi o ua kumu lāʻau nei, ʻo ia kekahi mea hōʻeuʻeu maoli mai e komo aku i loko o ka ʻoihana mālama ʻāina. Hala akula kekahi mau makahiki, kō maila ke au o ka ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, a ʻike akula nō kā i ke kākaʻikahi o ka poʻe e mālama maoli ana i ka ʻōlelo. He mea hoʻokāhāhā wale ka like o ka pilikia ma nā māhele a ʻelua. ʻO ka mea naʻe e kulu ai ka waimaka a e moe ʻole ai hoʻi ka pō, ʻo ia ka hopena o ka noho kaʻawale ʻana o kākou mai ka ʻāina aku a mai kā ʻōlelo aku—heleleʻi nā mea e ʻike ʻia ai kākou he Hawaiʻi. Wahi a ke Kumulipo, he mau kūpuna nā iʻa, nā lāʻau, a me nā mea ola a pau no kākou. A no laila, ke mālama ʻole kākou i ia mau kūpuna a nalo loa aku kekahi mai ka honua aku, nalo pū nō hoʻi kekahi māhele o ko kākou ʻano Hawaiʻi, kekahi momi o ka hoʻoilina o ko mua. Pehea, e nā Hawaiʻi, e ʻae aku kākou i ka heleleʻi wale aku o nā momi koe o kākou? A i ʻole e paio aku paha, i hiki i nā moʻopuna o kākou ke lei i ka lei hōlei, ʻaʻahu i ke kapa hōlei, a nanea hoʻi i nā mele i haku ʻia no ka hāʻawi ʻana i ia ʻano makana makamae? Me kākou nō ke koho. Me kākou nō ke ola a me ka make.
Haleakalā was once encircled by a massive, unbroken lei of forest, according to Biologist Dr. Art Medeiros. An extremely special forest type in that lei, the dryforest, ran from roughly Makawao to Kaupō, about halfway up the mountain, and hōlei was likely a significant species in that forest canopy. Only about 3% of that dryforest remains, but it still contains 50 species of Hawaiian trees, hardwoods used for everything from adze handles to house rafters and much more. Dr. Medeiros calls it “the Ace Hardware of the Hawaiians” because of its immense utilitarian value. He also notes that it’s home to uniquely Hawaiian scents and colors. Hōlei is a perfect example: Its light yellow blossoms look like tiny Plumeria flowers (they’re cousins), but smell sweeter and muskier, and its bark and roots yield a treasured yellow dye for kapa. The four endemic species of hōlei (Ochrosia) used to be common on all the main islands, but O. kilaueaensis is now extinct. The largest populations of O. haleakalae now occur at Auwahi (Maui) and Puʻuwaʻawaʻa (Hawaiʻi). Once considered rare, Art, his team, and many volunteers have planted 1,600 hōlei seedlings into three protected dryforest areas they are restoring in Auwahi, and more will be planted in a fourth area in the coming years. Thanks to their efforts, future kapa makers, lei makers, and their lucky recipients may once again revel in the scent and color of the beautiful hōlei. Go to auwahi.org to learn more about this incredible project. Kaluhea wale kahi pua makaliʻi - A tiny flower with a big fragrance.