These fascinating trees are easy to spot in Hawaii, often growing along salty coastlines and these trees have a solid place in Polynesian culture. They are adaptogenic and can be used for low energy, sluggish digestion, hangovers, etc. The medicine of this tree is said to strengthen mind and spirit. Common names include Thatch Screwpine, Hala (Hawaiian), Bacua (Spanish), and Vacquois (French).
The fruit of the hala tree only grows on the female tree. It can be eaten when it turned brought yellow. It was used throughout Polynesia as a food during times of famine. The round fruit is a cluster of seed pods. As it ripens, the fruit breaks apart into single seeds called keys. A new hala tree will sprout from these seeds.
Every part of this tree is useful! The leaves are used in weaving. The male flowers are fragrant and the pollen is thought to be an aphrodesiac. The ariel roots are very phallic in appearance. They are an alterative, used as a blood cleanser. They are also diaphoretic and diuretic.