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2013 Pathways to Sustainability

(page 9 of 9)

Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods Plants Its 200,000th Native Tree

Endangered baby I’o (Hawaiian Hawk) makes its home in a Legacy Tree.

View a tree planting

With a Legacy TreeTM program dedicated to restoring Hawaii’s endangered forests, Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods (HLH) is doing its part to foster the growth not only of our trees, but our economy as well.  Most people support the cause of environmental preservation, but there has been no clear cut mechanism for an individual to have a meaningful impact.  The Legacy Tree program helps to restore ecosystem diversity in Hawaii’s forests by pooling the donations of thousands of individuals to replant native ecosystems on lands that have been cleared by human activity.  The personal involvement creates far reaching awareness while creating quality green jobs and generating funds for non-profits.  All in all, it is a winning program for everyone touched by the concept.

Through its Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative, HLH is donating 1000 acres of its sustainable koa timber project to reforestation. Located on the slopes of Mauna Kea, this historic site was once a majestic koa forest and the personal property of King Kamehameha I – the first King of Hawaii. Sadly, the land was cleared nearly a century ago to make room for farming and ranching. Fortunately, some of the old growth trees still reside on the property. HLH is utilizing these trees as a seed source for all Legacy Trees in an effort to return this tropical forest to its former glory.

One of the most alluring features of the program is its simplicity. “A small act, but if done by enough people, can literally change the planet,” Dunster says.

Here’s how it works: Anyone, whether it is an individual, business, non-profit or other entity, contacts HLH to sponsor a legacy tree. HLH plants the tree using sustainable practices and proprietary technology, and the sponsor can designate a charity to receive some of the proceeds. “Charitable organizations use it as a fundraiser.  When someone sponsors a tree, $20 of the $60 goes to their charity,” Dunster says.


Who participates? A plethora of more than 200 non-profit organizations, green-minded businesses and caring individuals such as Four Seasons Resorts, JTB Hawaii and The American Lung Association, have chosen to participate.

“Individual people do it, too. They sponsor trees to commemorate a special event, honor an individual, or memorialize a loved one. Each tree sponsor received a certificate of planting containing their tree’s individual RFID/GIS tag number. Since each tree is chipped, as the tree grows, you can visit your trees online through applications like Google Earth. For those of you who are really adventurous, you can book a personal tour (for a fee) to come and visit your tree in person . All of the profits from the tours go to planting more trees. It’s really a perfect loop of sustainability,” says Dunster.

Jeffrey Dunster, Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods


Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods
(877) 707-TREE
91 Coelho Way
Honolulu, HI 96817

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