University of Hawai‘i at Manoa
UH Seal The founding college of the University of Hawai‘i, established 1907 Site Search | Directory
Skip BreadcrumbHome >> Publications and Information Central >> Taro Varieties in Hawaii >> Taro Details


Other Names: Papakolea

General Characteristics: Short to medium in height, moderately spreading, stocky, maturing within 9 to 12 months, producing from 5 to 10 oha; the brilliantly red-streaked apex of the petiole is distinctive.

Petiole: 60 to 80 cm. long, dark green brilliantly streaked with red at apex, especially when young, a brilliant deep pink ring at base, the area above red with a few broad green stripes, indistinctly pinkish at edge.

Leaf blade: 40 to 55 cm. long, 30 to 35 cm. wide, 30 to 40 cm. from tip to base of sinus, slightly concave, thin in texture, medium green; margins slightly undulate; piko light green or tinged with red; veins brilliantly reddish on lower surfaces of lobes; lobes acute with wide sinus.

Corm: Flesh white with pinkish tinge, especially near apex, and yellowish fibers; skin a brilliant pink, purple at leaf-scar rings.

Origin, and derivation of name: Native variety; Papokalea, being the name of a land district, and koae, meaning "the food of," probably indicates that this variety was the common food of the district.

Distribution: Planted exclusively under upland culture in a few scattered localities, chiefly in Kona and Puna, Hawaii.

Use: Primarily as a table taro.

Remarks: The red coloration near the base of the petioles is often so narrow that it may not be noticed.