Something to consider as more and more agricultural lands get covered over by concrete, 1911 / 2013.


 We are discussing this problem, that being the disappearance of the fluttering taro leaves from places where kalo farming was seen often before. This is clear should our speculation be true.

The Bishop Trustees and those of Pauahi Bishop are considering putting an end for all time to the farming of kalo on lands owned by Bishop and Mrs. Pauahi Bishop here in Honolulu, or in all areas near Honolulu; there will be no more farming of kalo from now on. Should the reader take a look at the lands towards the ocean and towards the uplands of School Street, the majority of those kalo lands belong to Bishop and Pauahi, and should these large tracts of kalo-growing lands be put an end to, taro leaves growing there will no longer be seen, and two years hence, the leases with the Chinese taro farmers will come to an end; but these are not the only taro lands; in Manoa Valley, there are acres of kalo land. It can be said that most of the taro-farming lands in Manoa Valley belong to Bishop, and should the kalo farming be put to an end in that valley, then it is appropriate for us to say that taro leaves will disappear from the district of Kona, and when the leases are stopped, the lands will be dried up, and they will be made into lots to lease to those who have no homes, or they will be sold, like what is being considered by the Trustees of Bishop folks.

 One of the main reasons to end the farming of kalo on these lands is perhaps because if the farming of kalo continues, these areas will be places for infectious diseases to reside; through this, O Hawaiians, our end will come; if these kalo lands are dried out and kalo is not grown, then there will be no other lands for the Chinese to lease like these tracts of lands of many acres, and should they indeed be done away with, then the places where kalo is grown will decrease. As a result, the poi prices will increase, for where will kalo be readily obtained to supply this town and to get poi? For those who have taro fields, it is important that they continue to plant taro; there will not be the profits in that work like what we always speak of when talking of farming; and it is not just here that the leaves of the taro will no longer be seen, but it will disappear from Waikane, Waiahole, and Kahana, for the water there is going to the sugarcane plantations. Alas for us Hawaiians who hereafter will be left wandering, looking for kalo and poi. Rise O Hawaiians and continue to farm kalo lest you be left hungry, being that the stirring and fluttering of kalo leaves will disappear from Honolulu nei.

[This deserves to be retranslated nicely…]

(Kuokoa Home Rula, 8/18/1911, p. 2)


Kuokoa Home Rula, Buke IX, Helu 33, Aoao 2. Augate 18, 1911.

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