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Hawaii is synonymous with Anthuriums. They are available throughout the year and are sometimes known as ‘the Heart of Hawaii.’ The tail-like part called ‘spadix’ is actually the floral cluster, made up of tiny true flowers. The heart-shaped color part is called ‘spathe.’

Anthurium andraeanum was discovered by Jose J. Triana in Columbia in 1876. A specimen was sent to Edouard F. André, botanist and horticultural editor in Europe for whom the specie, andraeanum was named. It was first introduced into the Hawaiian Islands in 1889 from England by Samuel Mills Damon. Propagation became common place by the 1940’s and Anthuriums became heavily cultured in Hawaii.

The Obake Anthurium hybrids are entirely Hawaiian in origin – the hybridization began in the early 1930’s. Growers used andraeanum as parent stock to develop unusual variegated Anthuriums. Research, hybridization and propagation continues at the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture & Human Resources (CTAHR).

The University of Hawaii and several of the active island hybridizers in collaboration with premier growers continue to work hard to bring new and exciting varieties to keep Hawaii in the forefront of Anthurium culture. Today there are thousands of Hawaii-bred varieties in cultivation.

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