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Plant Profile

Ma`oli`oli (Schiedea kaalae)

This rare member of the pink family has thick leaves, as shown in this picture. Photo Credit: Nellie Sugii
  • Global Rank: G1 - Critically Imperiled
  • Legal Status: Federally Endangered
  • Family: Caryophyllaceae
  • State: HI
  • Nature Serve ID: 156753
  • Lifeform: Shrub
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 12/17/1990

Schiedea kaalae is a small, sometimes woody perennial with thick, leathery leaves usually tufted at the topmost portion of the stem. Its flowers are borne on large, open panicles. Schiedea kaalae was historically known from the north-central and south-central Waianae Mountains and the northern Koolau Mountains of O`ahu. Currently, only less than 25 individuals remain in 7 small populations. These populations are at great risk of habitat degradation caused by feral pigs and goats, invasion of alien plant species, and fire. Schiedea kaalae appears to be long-lived, but there is no evidence of natural regeneration by seed. Seedlings of Schiedea kaalae are apparently consumed by introduced slugs and snails.

Where is Ma`oli`oli (Schiedea kaalae) located in the wild?


Steep slopes and shaded sites in diverse mesic forests at an elevation of 210 to 790 meters (USFWS 1995, 1998).


Pahole Gulch, Kaluaa Gulch, Pohakea Pass, Puu Kaua and Palawai Gulch in the Waianae Mountains. Also, Maakua Gulch and Makaua Stream in the Koolau Mountains (USFWS 1995, 1998) and (Wagner et al. 1999)

States & Provinces:

Ma`oli`oli can be found in Hawaii

Which CPC Partners conserve Ma`oli`oli (Schiedea kaalae)?

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

Nature Serve Biotics
  • 05/02/2017

This species is endemic to Oahu. It has been recorded from the Waianae Mountains and the central windward portion of the Koolau Mountains. There are 6 currently verified occurrences, totaling fewer than 50 plants. The species and its habitats are threatened by pigs, goats, and alien plants.

David Orr
  • 01/01/2010

Habitat degradation by feral pigs and goats. Competition from alien plant species. Fire. Predation by slugs and snails. Small number of extant individuals. (USFWS 1998, 2001)

David Orr
  • 01/01/2010

Waianae Mountains- 5 populations Koolau Mountains- 2 populations Total individuals less than 25 remaining. (USFWS 1998, 2001)

David Orr
  • 01/01/2010

Floral biology studies determine flowers of Schiedea kaalae to be perfect and self-incompatible. Propagation- greenhouse and in vitro by seed and cuttings. (USFWS 1998)

David Orr
  • 01/01/2010

Fencing and removal of feral pigs in the Pahole drainage area along with weeding. Fencing in the Palawai area. (USFWS 1998)

David Orr
  • 01/01/2010

Construct exclosure to protect populations against feral ungulates. Control competing alien plant species within enclosures. Control snails and slugs. Fire protection. (USFWS 1998)

David Orr
  • 01/01/2010

Pollination studies. Genetic studies. Physiological studies. Seed banking. Propagation. (USFWS 1998)


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Taxon Schiedea kaalae
Authority Wawra
Family Caryophyllaceae
CPC Number 3850
ITIS 20211
Duration Perennial
Common Names Ma'oli'oli | Oahu schiedea
Associated Scientific Names Schiedea kaalae | Schiedea kaalae var. acutifolia
Distribution Pahole Gulch, Kaluaa Gulch, Pohakea Pass, Puu Kaua and Palawai Gulch in the Waianae Mountains. Also, Maakua Gulch and Makaua Stream in the Koolau Mountains (USFWS 1995, 1998) and (Wagner et al. 1999)
State Rank
State State Rank
Hawaii S1
Ecological Relationships

Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID
Insects Not Specified Link
Lead Institution State Reintroduction Type Year of First Outplanting
Oahu Army Natural Resources Program Hawaii Reintroduction 2003
Oahu Army Natural Resources Program Hawaii Reinforcement 2003
Oahu Army Natural Resources Program Hawaii Reinforcement 2006

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