Plant lovers flock to tree giveaway

The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo
The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo

First photo: Lahaina residents Brandon Hirata (from foreground), Ethan Kaleiopu, Tamara Sambrano and Kawehi Flores-Akiona carry their new native Hawaiian plants.

Second photo: Maui High School senior Alexi Joaquin tries on a haku lei she made during Saturday’s Arbor Day 1,000 Tree Giveaway at the Maui Nui Botanical Gardens in Kahului.

Gardens horticulturalist Kaioli Kosaka said that the day started with a “mad dash” by people excited to lay claim to one of the 1,000 native trees given away. “As soon as it opened, everybody was running for the trees,” she said. Along with giving away 25 different species of native plants, there were activity and food booths.