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About Our Hawaiian Exotics

The Hawaiian Islands are known and cherished around the world for its scenic beauty, Polynesian culture and unique treasures that represent the true spirit of Hawaii.

Wisteria Lane™ has taken the highest grade laminate flooring and captured the rare and exotic quality of Hawaii’s most sacred hardwoods while doing no harm to the species and preserving the forestry of Hawaii. Below we have listed some very interesting information about the exotic woods of Hawaii so that you may be enlightened in what your Wisteria Lane™ Hawaiian Exotic Laminate Floor will represent to everyone who sees it.

Hawaiian Koa

Koa is one of Hawaii’s largest native trees and has been called “King of the Hawaiian Woods”. A hardwood, the koa tree grows in the higher elevations (2500-7000 ft), beautifully grained, colors varying from honey gold to cherry reds and dark browns. Some have high quality curly or fiddle back graining or swirls of dark ribbon lines or quite plain in appearance but all has a wonderful tiger-eye quality that allows the observer to see into the wood like a hologram. Koa trees can mature to have trunks 6 feet in diameter and stand 100 feet tall. These giant Koa’s are occasionally seen in the few virgin Koa forests that survive today in the mountains on the island of Hawaii.

Koa trees were mentioned often in ancient stories and songs and provided the wood to make calabashes or “umekela’au” bowls, surf boards, weaponry, ukuleles, and canoe paddles. Canoes carved from Koa made the finest canoes in the pacific.

Hawaiian Mango

The mango (Mangifera indica) is a deep-rooted evergreen tree that can bear hundreds of pink-white flowers in inflorescent clusters which leads to the well known sweet and colorful fruit. There are many mango varieties grown here in Hawai’i and it can grow at almost any elevation. The Mango tree is most popular for its exotic fruit as well as a few wood products such as bowls, picture frames, decorative boxes, etc. Wisteria Lane™ has gone one step farther in bringing you this gorgeous light colored exotic wood as a laminate flooring option. Mango wood has a very broad color span ranging from a light golden brown to very dark brown jagged grains with mild curly or fiddle back grains. This Hawaiian exotic species is sure to catch the attention on anyone who comes across it.

Hawaiian Monkey Pod

Monkey-pod (Pithecellobium saman) is frequently found on old home sites near streams in the forests of Hawai’i where it is usually associated with mango trees, ti leaf plants, guava trees, and other escaped domestic plants. The pods contain a sweet edible pulp that supplies nutritious food for animals. Children also chew on the pods, which have a licorice-like flavor. Although generally planted as a shade tree and ornamental, its wood is highly valued for carvings and furniture. The wood of the monkey pod tree has a bright honey gold color with chocolate brown waves running throughout the wood. It has the same beautiful tiger-eye look as Hawaiian koa wood and is just as breath-taking.

The tree was reportedly introduced into Hawaii in 1847, when Peter A. Brinsmade, a businessman visiting Europe, returned to Hawaii, presumably via Panama, with two seeds, both of which germinated. One of the seedlings was planted in downtown Honolulu, the other at Koloa on the island of Kauai. These seedlings are possibly the progenitors of all the monkey-pod trees now in Hawaii.

Hawaiian Bamboo

Bamboo (bambusa vulgaris) forests are scattered throughout the beautiful Hawaiian Island chain. The bamboo plant or Ohe’ in Hawaiian is a type of grass and grows rapidly which makes it a very wise choice when it comes to construction materials as there is no possible threat of deforestation. There are over 1,000 different types of Bamboo and can range in heights; 2 foot bushes to stalks as high as 100 feet. Most Bamboo plants flower, but only once every 60-120 years, with large heads much like sugar cane. After blooming, all of the Bamboo plants of the same species die back, this happens worldwide at the same time! Similar to the global song of the Humpback Whale.

The history of bamboo use in Hawaiian dates back to ancient times; such uses were crop irrigation by cutting the shoots length wise and removing the middle of the node so that water could flow smoothly down from waterfall landings to taro patches below, applying dye to tapa cloth for clothing and beautiful instruments in the art of Hula. Hawaii, having such a large Asian population, also has been blessed with the prized uses of bamboo that came with the Asian culture such as furniture, mats, hats, paper, rope, roofing tiles, etc. Wisteria Lane™ now brings this exotic combination of Hawaiian/Asian beauty to your home or office.

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