Aileen Yeh Reports

July 2006

Aileen Yeh delivers 8 healthy Alani seedlings ('04 seeds) to Maui while attending a conference on Koa wilt, a new problem threatening Maui native Koa.

July 2006

How I  grew the alani…  I  clipped some seeds, and some I didn’t     I use the band pots because they tend to give better root growth,  with minimal root circling in the pot.  Less chance of self girdling later on.  One of the
main problems  I’ve seen in koa plants in the landscape is people plant a large tree which has a small, usually round pot.  The roots circle around, and after it’s planted, and the tree is big, like  after 5 or more  years,  the tree might start showing signs of dieback.  When we dig down around the tree, we  find the  roots have circled around the
trunk, and  it  chokes itself.

Anyway, I digress.   For  the  alani  I took over,  I put a bit of sphagnum moss in the botom of the band pot to keep the  media from falling out and to keep it moist.  I use a mixture of Sunshine mix #4 and large perlite.    I started the  Alani in forestry tubes, and  after they got  to be  about 4 inches tall,  I transplanted them to the band pots which they were in.  It is best to keep them elevated  so that the roots come down out of the pots and get air pruned, rather than circling around, which is what would happen if left in a solid tray.  You could use cinder instead of perlite to lighten the media.

Aileen Yeh

June 15, 2005

Aileen Yeh in her nursery in Hilo. Aileene succeeded with the highest Alani seed propagation rate of 20%.In June she hand-carried 15 seedlings via air, for distribution outplanting on Maui.

June 2, 2005

Here is a picture I just took today. They are actually bigger than I thought. Note the Sharpie pen stuck in the black band pot. Hope this makes your day. All the seedlings in that rack are the Alani.
Aloha,  Aileen

February 16,2005

I am attaching a photo of the Alani seedlings that have survived. I had a total of 20 seeds germinate (20% germination). The seeds were sown around September 26 and 28, 2004. Of the 20 that germinated, one damped off, and one got the top cut off. I’m not sure if it was a slug or a bird.

Twelve of the seedlings look great, and 6 of them are kind of small, and do not seem as vigorus. The seeds that I soaked for 48 hrs then sanded had 7/25 germinants. The seeds I soaked only for 48 hrs had 3/25 germinants. Then again, the batch that I did not sand, but just soaked, had 11/50 germinants. I have checked a part of the remaining seeds, and they seem to be just dormant still. There is hope that more will germinate. Thus far, I have drenched them with Gnatrol for fungus gnats, and sprinkled some slug bait around. Also sprayed them with Merit just in case.

At this time, I’d like to ask what kind of place they grow in, and what kind of media they like, and how much water they prefer. I am at the 500 to 600 foot elelvation, and the greenhouse is fairly cool and shaded. Mahalo, for letting me try my hand on this most precious seed. If anyone has suggestions or comments, they can email me at

November 26, 2004

I am happy to say that 3 of the alani seeds have sprouted within the last week. I know there wasn’t anything up a week ago.
Hopefully, there will be more. These were sown Sept. 27, 2004, and were not sanded. they were soaked for 24 hrs, and sown into Sunshine mix in dibble tubes, and covered with vermiculite. That is a germination time of less than 2 months, so I’m suprised. Have a Happy

Aileen Yeh

September 25, 2004

I received the seeds in good condition, and will get started on them today. I have in the past grown 3 other species of alani from seeds. One had very tiny seeds, and one had seeds about the same size and appearance as these that you sent. (They were such a challenge, and take a long time.) I have tried using a Sunshine and cinder mix, as well as perlite:vermiculite, and tried sanding them, but I don’t think sanding helped me at all! I was so glad to see that there are so many others that are growing alani, and it is great to see what other’s are trying. One thing I have done in the past, was to sow the seeds into individual containers. I use tree tubes. Then, it’s easier to keep track. I have noticed that after transplanting into larger pots, they sometimes get a leaf curl. Once in awhile, I find aphids. I will let you know what happens.

Aileen Yeh

June 16, 2004

Dear Ms. Moran,
I recently read the article in the Maui news about your work with alani. I have been growing alani from seed, and had found that nicking and soaking worked well. I was wondering if you had any extra seeds I could try? I would appreciate it. If not, I’d understand. If there is anything I could help you with, I surely would try. I work for Hawaii Agriculture Research Center, and hav a small nursery where I grow trees for reforestation, as well as some native species. Of all the natives, the alani are my favorite.

Aileen Yeh

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