Kauai Remya / Center For Plant Conservation
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Plant Profile

Kauai Remya (Remya kauaiensis)

Closeup of leaves and flowering panicles. Photo Credit: S. Perlman
  • Global Rank: G1 - Critically Imperiled
  • Legal Status: Federally Endangered
  • Family: Asteraceae
  • State: HI
  • Nature Serve ID: 141669
  • Lifeform: Vine, Shrub
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 05/28/1986

R. kauaiensis (Asteraceae) is one of three species of a genus endemic to the Hawaiian Islands. It was considered extinct for over 30 years, until 4 populations were discovered starting in 1983. In 2000, 14 populations with a total of approximately 80 plants of R. kauaiensis were recorded (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service [USFWS] 2000); four additional populations have since discovered, with more than a hundred additional plants (USFWS 2001). Seedlings of this taxon have not been observed. Flowers of R. kauaiensis have been observed in April, May, June, and August, and are probably insect-pollinated. Seeds are probably wind or water-dispersed. R. kauaiensis may be self-incompatible. (Sakai et al. 1995) R. kauaiensis is a small short-lived perennial shrub, about 90 centimeters (3 ft) tall, with many slender, sprawling branches that are covered with fine tan fuzz near their tips. The leaves of R. kauaiensis are coarsely toothed along the edges, and are green on the upper surface while the lower surface is covered with a dense mat of fine white hairs (Wagner et al. 1999).

Where is Kauai Remya (Remya kauaiensis) located in the wild?


R. kauaiensis inhabits steep, north or northeast-facing slopes between 850 to 1,250 meters (2,800 to 4,100 ft) in elevation. (USFWS 2000).Associated species of R. kauaiensis include Acacia koa (koa) Metrosideros polymorpha (ohia), Chamaesyce sp. (akoko), Nestegis sandwicensis (olopua), Hedyotis terminalis (manono), Pouteria sandwicensis (alaa), Dodonaea viscose (aalii), Dianella sandwicensis (uki uki), and Claoxylon sandwicensis (poola).


R. kauaiensis is endemic to Kauai and was historically found in the Na Pali Kona Forest Reserve at Koaie, Mohihi, Kalalau, Makaha, Nualolo, Kawaiula, Kuia, Honopu, Awaawapuhi, Kopakaka, and Kauhao, on

States & Provinces:

Kauai Remya can be found in Hawaii

Which CPC Partners conserve Kauai Remya (Remya kauaiensis)?

CPC's Plant Sponsorship Program provides long term stewardship of rare plants in our National Collection. We are so grateful for all our donors who have made the Plant Sponsorship Program so successful. We are in the process of acknowledging all our wonderful plant sponsorship donors on our website. This is a work in progress and will be updated regularly.

Conservation Actions

Dustin Wolkis
  • 07/09/2022

On 7 July 2022 National Tropical Botanical Garden and Hawaii State Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife botanists collected Remya kauaiensis for IMLS funded CPC RIN study. The individual maternal founder was a rambling shrub/vine with multiple stems from base only, weaving through Metrosideros polymorpha var. glaberrima about a dozen or more meters long. The leaves were much lighter underneath than top. There were flowers to mature fruit present. It was growing on a steep slope under mostly closed to some scattered canopy in Metrosideros-Acacia koa mesic forest. Although 8 individuals were located, only one was reproductive. The original accession was collected from the same population in 1990. 

Center for Plant Conservation
  • 08/19/2021
  • Orthodox Seed Banking

In 2021, CPC contracted National Tropical Botanical Garden to recollect seed from a population currently held in long term orthodox seed storage as part of an IMLS-funded seed longevity experiment. The National Laboratory for Genetic Resources Preservation will evaluate how germination tested viability and RNA Integrity of seed lots decline over time in storage.

Nature Serve Biotics
  • 05/02/2017

This species is endemic to the island of Kauai. Its moist forest habitat has been substantially invaded by a number of alien plant species. Pigs, deer and goats are heavily impacting the species range-wide. It is estimated that no more than 200 plants remain.

  • 01/01/2010

Threats to R. kauaiensis include herbivory and habitat degradation by feral ungulates and competition from alien plant species. Other threats include erosion, fire, and risk of extinction from naturally occurring events, such as landslides or hurricanes,

  • 01/01/2010

Number of Populations: 18 (USFWS 2001) Number of Plants: <200 (USFWS 2001)

  • 01/01/2010

The seeds of R. kauaiensis have been tested by the National Seed Laboratory (NSSL), and the National Tropical Botanical Garden (NTBG) finding that they are orthodox and can tolerate freezing. The laboratory germination time was 2 to 6 months (Yoshinaga 2002).

  • 01/01/2010

NTBG has seeds in their seed storage facility for short-term storage, but have not been able to successfully propagate this species. NTBG currently has ex situ holdings of seeds in its seed bank, which represents all of the 18 populations.

  • 01/01/2010

1. Research on the reproduction biology, seed storage and regeneration of R. kauaiensis is needed. 2. Map genetic diversity in the surviving populations of R. kauaiensis. 3. Test the influence of weeding and fencing on populations of R. kauaiensis. Recommendations derived from M.H. Chapin and M. Maunder.

  • 01/01/2010

1. Establish secure ex situ stocks with full founder representation. 2. Develop proper horticultural protocols and pest management for R. kauaiensis. 3. Survey ex situ holdings and conduct molecular fingerprinting. Recommendations derived from M.H. Chapin and M. Maunder.


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Taxon Remya kauaiensis
Authority Hillebr.
Family Asteraceae
CPC Number 3719
ITIS 38817
Duration Perennial
Common Names Kauai remya
Associated Scientific Names Remya kauaiensis | Remya kauaiensis var. magnifica | Remya kauaiensis var. magnifolia | Remya kauaiensis var. kauaiensis
Distribution R. kauaiensis is endemic to Kauai and was historically found in the Na Pali Kona Forest Reserve at Koaie, Mohihi, Kalalau, Makaha, Nualolo, Kawaiula, Kuia, Honopu, Awaawapuhi, Kopakaka, and Kauhao, on
State Rank
State State Rank
Hawaii S1
Ecological Relationships


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