Native Plant Restoration Project

In conjunction to the eradication project, the native plant restoration project promotes recovery of native plant communities that support seabird nesting. Itʻs not enough to pull weeds and leave an area open for non-natives to aggressively colonise an area, one must also fastidiously out plant natives in these areas to gain a foothold prior to the onset of non-natives recruiting in these places.

There are a few ways the Kure Field Stations seeks to accomplish this goal:

  • Propagate native plant species in Kure’s shade house for out planting
  • Broadcast native seeds collected from Kure’s plant populations
  • Introduce native plants that are rare or previously extirpated on Kure.

Native Plants in the Kure Nursery

Not all native plants are highlighted in our Nursery Plants section because there is an established and thriving population present.  The complete list of Native Plants that are present on Kure can be found in our Field ID Books on our Resources Page as well as our Plants and Habitat Page.

Eragrostis variabilis

General Information
Kāwelu is one of the top restoration plants in the Kure nursery and one of the few native kinds of grass being restored on Kure.  It has been a great infiltrator to areas where non-native grasses once

Mau‘u ‘Aki‘aki
Fimbristylis stylis
Button sedge

General Information
Fimbristylis is a native sedge that grows in dense clusters of stiff, curved blades. Fimbristylis seedlings are very small and difficult to find at the cotyledon stage. Early leaves are both curled and curved, like later

Ipomea indica
Ocean Blue Morning Glory

General Information
Ipomoea indica, called koaliʻawa, is the more common of the two morning-glory species native to Kure Atoll. It is a vigorous, tender perennial vine native to tropical habitats throughout the world. On Kure, it is common

Ipomoea pes-caprae
Beach Morning Glory
General Info
Ipomoea pes-caprae, called pōhuehue, is a cosmopolitan species found in sandy coastal areas throughout the Hawaiian archipelago. It is a strong vine, the smooth, broad leaves notched at the top; the flowers pink, bell-shaped; a white-flowered

Lepturus repens

General Information
Lepturus is native sedge to Kure. Lepturus cotyledons are long and relatively broad compared to the first true leaves, with a consistent width over most of the length of the blade, then tapering abruptly to a point.  The

Beach Naupaka
Scaevola taccada

General Information
Naupaka is a ubiquitous native shrub along Hawai’i coastlines that in the Northwestern Hawaii Islands will form dense stands in places. In other places, there are less dense or pockets of naupaka with small clearings. It has

Sesuvium portulacastrum
Sea purslane

General Information
Sesuvium is an introduced native plant, called ʻakulikuli, with fleshy, succulent leaves, red stems, and purple flowers. The succulent leaves of Sesuvium are relatively distinctive, only resembling Portulaca oleracea on Kure. Sesuvium leaves are much longer and


Sicyos maximowiczii

General Information
ʻAnunu is an annual vine in the Gourd Family (Cucurbitaceae) which includes cucumbers, watermelons, and pumpkins. The leaves are large, roughly elliptic, and the stem is stout.

No other plant on Kure produces cotyledons at nearly this size.  The

Boerhavia repens

General Information
Boerhavia repens is a native plant called ʻalena.  It is a creeping vine easy to distinguish from other plants on Kure. One of the few instances ʻalena is mistaken for another plant is when it is confused with Flaveria

Tribulus cistoidies
Puncture Vine

General Information
Tribulus cistoidies is a native plant to Kure, called nohu, and is abundant in open areas. Its leaf pattern and yellow flowers are unmistakable. The cotyledons (sprouting leafs) are large and blunt-ended, giving them an almost rectangular

Dwarf Eragrostis
Eragrostis paupera

General Information
Eragrostis paupera, a native grass, is truly a dwarf. It can produce seed as little more than a sprout. Large plants are seldom more than a few inches tall or wide. Young sprouts of E. paupera are