Sadleria cyatheoides

Image of amaumau fern


AmauBlechnaceaeEndemic to the Hawaiian IslandsLnaihale, LnaiGrowing among pala (Sphenomeris chinensis).Hawaiian Names:maumau is also the name for young amau ferns; many (plural) amau ferns, ferny, abounding in amau ferns; a covering of amau ferns (preceded by ke). Mau is the same as amau.Maumau is the same as maumau. Halemaumau (name of the pit at Klauea Crater), means "mau fern house" or "home of the maumau." maumau (Sadleria cyatheoides) can be seen growing in Klauea Crater and around Halemaumau.Puaa ehuehu means "red pig."Early Hawaiian Uses:Amau was an important famine food for the early Hawaiians or fed to pigs. The starchy pith was cooked in an imu, and the young shoots eaten raw or cooked. Plants were powdered to make a beverage similar to tea or coffee.A red dye was extracted from the young fronds as well as the trunks of larger plants for kapa (tapa). Leafstalks were beaten and used as sizing with bark in kapa making. The sticky sap from the open fronds were sometimes used in the kapa making process to keep the pulp moist and together or to act as a type of glue to repair the kapa.The fronds of amau were used as a temporary shelter in the forest, or as thatch (especially on corners or ridges) or wall coverings if pili (Heteropogon contortus), a grass, was scarce.The fronds were also used as mulch in gardens in drier parts of the islands.The pulu (fuzzy hairs around emerging fronds or leaves) of amau resembles hpuu (Cibotium spp.) and was also used as stuffing for pillows and mattresses.The plants with other ingredients were pounded to make a juice applied to boils and pimples. The shoots were used for lung troubles, and inner bark pounded for asthma. The dried leaves were used to treat the illness palah (rot) and kaoko ino (syphilis).The generic name Sadleria is named after Dr. Joseph Sadler (1791-1849), a physician who studied the ferns in his native Hungary.The specific epithet cyatheoides is named after Cyathea, a tree fern genus, and the Greek oides, resembling, probably alluding to a similarity in habit to tree ferns.Etymologynativeplants.hawaii.edu/plant/view/Sadleria_cyatheoidesnativeplants.hawaii.edu/plant/view/Sphenomeris_chinensis

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David Eickhoff
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