PLANTATION GARDEN TOUR
STROLL THROUGH THE PLANTATION GARDEN TOUR
As you wander through Dole Plantation’s eight different gardens, you’ll get an up-close view of the plants that are the source of tropical delights from coffee to exotic fruit to colorful cacao pods, used to make Waialua’s signature single-estate chocolate. Through the use of state-of-the art audio wands, you’ll also hear stories about life on the plantation and Hawaiian heritage. You’ll learn which plants were sacred, how plants were cooked and how native Hawaiians used these plants for everything they needed, from medicine to canoes to chewing gum!
Tickets can be purchased online (minimum 24 hours in advance of visit) and directly at our ticket booth at Dole Plantation.
|Children (4-12) $5.25|
|Kama’aina/Military – $5.50|
|Hawaii Resident Student – $5.00|
|Group Tours (25 or more) – $5.50|
|Children under 4 are free when accompanied by an adult.|
Plantation Garden Tour – 8 Mini Gardens
THE NORTH SHORE
The native yellow hibiscus (Hibiscus brackenridgei), known as pua aloalo in the Hawaiian language, is Hawaii’s state flower. This plant’s magnificent blooms are beloved of gardeners the world over, and today there are over 5,000 varieties of hibiscus, from traditional solid yellow, red, pink, and white flowers to brilliant and unusual color combinations and shapes. Keep your eye out for refined lavender frills, or flowers that encompass all the hues of a Hawaiian sunset.
The Hawaiian Islands are the most isolated land mass on the planet, but before the first Hawaiians came to Hawaii’s shores, these islands were already home to a thriving ecosystem. These special native plants and animals, many of which are found nowhere else in the world, arrived by chance on the wind and sea currents, and evolved for millennia in almost total isolation.
A wide variety of tropical flora and native plants can be found throughout our North Shore district. Here are just two examples.
KOA (Acacia koa) Koa, which can take half a century to mature and grows up to 100 feet tall, is one of Hawaii’s most prized tree species.
In Hawai`i, the lei, or garland, is a special gift of aloha, welcome, and love. Many visitors receive a lei upon arrival in the islands—always with a smile and a hug. Hawai‘i residents also make and give a lei to honor an achievement, commemorate a special event, or just to express affection.
Pineapples are the most well known—and certainly the most delicious—members of the bromeliaciae (bromeliads), a family of plants that consists of nearvvvly 3,000 species and hybrids in a plethora of different forms, from tiny Spanish Moss to Puya raimondii, whose gigantic flower spikes can grow taller than a two-story house.
LIFE IN THE FIELDS
In pineapple’s heyday, the working day of a plantation laborer began before dawn, six days a week. Workers, both men and women (and sometimes children during their school vacations) rose at 4:30 a.m. and waited for the plantation trucks that took them to the fields before dawn. There were many different kinds of work to be done. Land preparation, planting, fertilization, weeding and harvesting were all done by hand. A laborer’s day was finished by 4 p.m., when the trucks returned them to the plantation camp. A skilled laborer could plant more than 10,000 pineapple crowns a day.
On Hawaii’s plantations, workers were usually housed in separate “camps” according to their nationality, a practice that helped the workers maintain a sense of community, continuity, and cultural identity. Within the camps, families celebrated the festivals, shared the foods, and participated in the traditional activities of their homelands. The Japanese camps held o-bon festivals in late summer, Chinese camps celebrated the Chinese New Year with fireworks and ceremonial foods, and the Filipino camps celebrated Rizal Day in honor of José Rizal, the national hero of the Philippines.