Kalo Varieties

Which variety of kalo is the best? The one that's in the bowl on the table. - Jerry Konanui, Hawaiian Mahi‘ai

Use As Food

Chiefly eaten as a poi taro.


Grown to a limited extent on O‘ahu, mainly at Waialua, usually under lo‘i (wetland) culture.

General Characteristics

Medium in height, stiffly erect, maturing within 9 to 12 months, producing from 2 to 5 ‘ohā; identified by dark green Hā (Petiole) flecked with reddish-brown near basal portion.

Ha (Petiole)

60 to 90 cm. long, dark green flecked with reddish-brown on lower portion, with an indistinct, narrow, reddish lihi (stem edge), pink at kōhina (base).

Lau or Lu'au(Leaf Blade)

40 to 65 cm. long, 30 to 50 cm. wide, 35 to 55 cm. from tip to base of sinus (māwae), arrow head shaped, thin in texture, slightly crinkled, dark green; piko and midrib whitish to light brownish; round leaf section (lobes) obtuse with shallow, wide lihi māwae (sinus).

'I'o kalo (Corm)

Flesh white with light pinkish tinge, especially near the top (apex), and yellowish fibers; skin dark pink to purplish.

Pua (Flower)



 According to J.K., the lau (leaf) appears to have a "belly" shape, "like a spare tire."