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Hawaii Island Palm Society

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The Hawaii Island Palm Society, (HIPS), is a great group of people who simply love palms and who strive to promote their use in private gardens and the general landscape. Our goal is to perpetuate rare and endangered palms worldwide, through the sharing of seeds and plants. Our organization is affiliated with the International Palm Society and is dedicated to community outreach and education.  Among other community services, HIPS volunteers plan, plant, and help maintain the outstanding palm collection at the Panaewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens in Hilo.  

Members enjoy private garden tours, lectures, electronic newsletter, an annual banquet and palm auction, use of an extensive reference library, and discount pricing with BEI Agricultural Products in Hilo.  New members are eligible for open garden days, a chance to meet with established HIPS members in their gardens.

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Open Garden Days for New Members

Established HIPS members welcome our newest members by inviting them into their private gardens for a more personal opportunity to learn about growing palms in Hawaii.  Find out full details in our March Newsletter.  If you would like to offer your garden or would like to participate in a tour, contact Rick Kelley at

Upcoming events

    • 4 Jan 2020
    • Panaewa Zoo and Botanical Garden

    Boy Scouts will be planting out the new cycad garden at the Panaewa Zoo and Botanical Garden in October.  To follow the progress and get more information, check out the forum: Kristen McGrath Cycad Garden

    • 17 Jan 2020
    • 7:00 PM
    • UH Hilo, Room TBD

    Saúl Ernesto is a young researcher from Colombia who is part of the team that discovered the new palm genus Sabinaria hidden in the infamous Darien Gap.  His passion for conservation has taken him to some of the wildest places in his native Colombia, in an attempt to document the rich diversity of plants, specifically palms, so that governments can make informed decisions about designating areas for development. Saúl has been visiting famous US herbariums and studying with his advisor in Athens, Ohio. He is finishing his grand tour here in Hawaii.  He has given talks along the way while visiting our nations best botanical resources - Missouri Botanical Garden, the Field Museum, the Smithsonian Institute, and New York Botanical Garden.  Join us for an evening of adventure and discovery.

    • 8 Feb 2020
    • 5:00 PM
    • Aunty Sally's Luau Hale, 799 Piilani Street, Hilo
    Registration is closed

    Save The Date

    We are planning Something Special

    Schedule of Events

    5:00 pm 

    Silent Auction

    6:15 pm 


    7:15 pm

    Business Meeting and 2020 Elections

    Treasurer Position Open, contact Rick Kelley

    7:30 pm Live Auction

    Last Year's Live Auction Palms:

New Resources:

Video Lecture: 

Jason Dewees, Designing With Palms

Thanks to HIPS member Dean Ouer for creating a special online version of Jason's November 8th, 2019 lecture .  Jason's talk and other HIPS lectures are available on Dean's website Tropiscape, a fantastic resource for anyone who is growing palms or other tropical plants.  

Addition to HIPS Lending Library:

Latest Newsletters:

Forum Updates:

Do you wonder who volunteers their time for board meetings?  Get to know your board members here.  If you are interested in joining the HIPS board, contact Rick Kelley at 

Contact Us:  

P.O. Box 1585, Kea'au, Hi   96749

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