The Pacific Ocean influences the weather and temperature of the Hawaiian Islands. Native flowers benefit from the mild temperatures that rarely fall below 40 degrees F during the winter. Average temperatures range from 78 degrees F in the summer to 72 degrees F in the winter. Trade winds carry moisture to the plants and flowers thriving on the islands. These winds ensure an abundant amount of rainfall so the native flowers do not suffer arid conditions. Hawaii is home to native tropical flowers that are commonly used in landscaping and flower crafts.
Alula (Brighamia insignis) is an unusual Hawaiian flower growing 3 to 6 feet tall. The shiny, leathery leaves are 4 to 8 inches long and form a dark green rosette at the top of an extremely thick stem. From September to November, Alula flowers with clusters of trumpet-shaped blossoms that are cream and yellow in color. Alula smells like honeysuckle.
Awapuhi kuahiwi (Zingiber zerumbet) reaches 7 feet tall with long stems. Long, narrow, green leaves grow along these stems. Flower stalks appear with pinecone-like growths on the ends. These green flower cones turn red and sprout small, pale yellow blossoms. The cones produce a milk-like substance. Awapuhi kuahiwi forms large clumps within a couple of years.
Beach naupaka (Scaevola sericea) is a shrub-like flower that grows 10 feet tall. The evergreen leaves gather at the tips of the branches, and the five petaled blossoms show up in white and pale violet shades. The flowers appear only on one side of the flower head, resembling a fan. Beach naupaka blooms year-round but produces more blossoms during the summer. This flower inhabits beaches and atolls throughout the Hawaiian Islands.
Hinahina (Heliotropium anomalum) is also known as beach heliotrope. This flower forms low-growing, green mats of foliage 6 to 12 inches deep. The 1- to 2-inch-long leaves are narrow and grow in rosettes near the ends of the stems. White, small flowers are tubular in shape and give off a sweet scent.
Nehe (Wollastonia integrifolia) is a woody perennial flower with stems 6 1/2 feet long. This flowering vine has oval, green leaves that are 1/3 to 1 1/4 inch long. The succulent leaves store water for the plant. Nehe produces small, yellow, daisy-like blossoms all year long.