Event to benefit storm-damaged arboretum, fund needed repairs

Tropical Storm Iselle damaged trees and fences at the D.T. Fleming Arboretum at Pu’u Mahoe, and an Aug. 30 fundraising picnic and “Nature vs. Nature” hike will be held to raise funds for repairs, arboretum officials announced.

The event costs $125 per person, with $100 of the amount tax deductible. Participants will meet at 10 a.m. at Keokea Park to caravan through locked gates at Ulupalakua Ranch en route to the Pu’u Mahoe cinder cone.

The arboretum is Hawaii’s oldest and largest collection of native plant species, event organizers said.

On Aug. 8, “severe winds blew through Pu’u Mahoe and Ulupalakua Ranch,” according to an announcement. “Pu’u Mahoe trees and fences were damaged. Signature trees were blown over. Remaining trees and plants individually need care to prune and remove broken branches.”

“Fortunately, the rarest trees in the arboretum, although windblown, were spared. The irrigation system and trails need repair from uprooted trees. Large eucalyptus and wattle trees have damaged hog fencing protecting the 17-acre native forest reserve,” officials said in a release.

There’s a limit of 25 participants for the picnic, which will feature a local-style lunch and the Fleming signature dessert, “Purple Cows.” The picnic will be at the historic Fleming cabin overlooking La Perouse Bay.

For reservations, contact 572-1097 or info@flemingarboretum.org. More information is available at www.flemingarboretum.org.