Pohuehue

Ipomea pes-caprae/Beach morning glory
Beach morning glory

Indigenous. Trailing glabrous vine with purple stems, often rooting at the nodes, fleshy to nearly woody from a thickened taproot, up to 5 m or more long. Leaves simple alternate, blades fleshy, oblong to suborbicular, 3-10 cm long, notched at the tip, surfaces glabrous. Flowers solitary or in few-flowered cymes up to 15 cm long. Calyx or 5 unequal, ovate to elliptical sepals 8-13 mm long. Corolla funnel-form, pink to rose-purple, 3-5 cm long, shallowly 10 lobed. Fruit an ovoid to subglobose capsule 12-17 mm long, containing 4 dark, ovoid, densely hair seeds 6-10 mm long.

Pantropical in distribution, and is found on all the major high archipelagoes of Polynesia and all the low and high archipelagoes of Micronesia. It is one of the most abundant species on rocky and sandy beaches of high islands, sometimes forming almost pure stands, but is uncommon on atolls. On sandy beaches, its creeping stems extend almost down to the high tide mark.

Facts About Pohuehue

Flowers solitary or in few-flowered cymes up to 15 cm long.

Cultural Uses

Roots and leaves were pounded into a poultice for wounds,sores, and broken bones. Small amounts of roots and leaves were used for medicine and famine food, too much though, can be dangerous.