About Town | 8-19-14


Volunteers sought to plant Christmas trees

Volunteers are sought for the upcoming Aina Mauna Christmas Tree Planting from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Aug. 27 on Mauna Kea.

Seeds will be imported and propagated and 1,600 Douglas, noble and grand fir trees will be planted on two acres of Department of Hawaiian Home Lands land in Humuula and Piihonua. These species were selected because they were determined to be noninvasive.

According to the Hawaii Department of Agriculture, shipments of Christmas trees from the Pacific Northwest have been infested with slugs and other pests that are not found in Hawaii. These invasive species can be harmful to Hawaii’s unique ecosystems.

“Our goal is to demonstrate that top-quality Christmas trees can be successfully grown here in Hawaii. Providing Hawaii with locally grown Christmas trees will reduce imports and support the County of Hawaii’s initiative to buy local,” said Hawaii Forest Industry Association executive director Heather Simmons.

To sign up as a volunteer, email hfia@hawaiiforest.org or call 933-9411 by Aug. 20. Space is limited. A carpool will leave at 8 a.m. from the sheep station a quarter mile mauka on Mauna Kea Access Road. The planting site is above 6,000 feet in elevation and may be chilly or rainy. Volunteers should bring a jacket or a raincoat, wear closed-toe shoes, long pants and sunscreen. Cold drinks and bento lunches will be provided.

For more information, visit hawaiiforest.org, call Simmons at 933-9411, or email heather.hfia@hawaiiforest.org.