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The design of the garden was a result of the unique topography, in combination with a desire to visually separate the different areas from each other. The goal was to create as much interest as possible, with trails that would seemingly disappear in a jungle of palms. The main arteries of the garden were first bulldozed in March 1996, producing the wide major paths that have since been paved. These are all wide enough to drive on. Over the next few years, all the areas between the major paths were cleared of invasive species, such as Tibouchina and Strawberry guava plants. This was typically done by hand, and in the process, narrow foot trails were also constructed, which made it possible to gain access to all areas of the garden. Throughout this process, almost all of the native ohi'a trees (Metrosideros polymorpha) were left untouched. Because of the fairly recent volcanic origin of the area (the most recent lava flow in the area is believed to have taken place a few hundred years ago), there is very little soil. A mixture of volcanic cinder and soil has been used to plant all the palms, and other plants in.

panoramaPhoto by Dean Oeur

While the garden has a great diversity of palms from across the globe, representation of species from Madagascar, Southeast Asia and the South Pacific is particularly strong.

The garden is divided into Old World and New World.

Old World: Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, Oceania/Islands of the South Pacific, Seychelles

New World: South America, Central America and the Caribbean (all in the same general area)

When it comes to Old World palms, there are specific areas for palms from Madagascar, New Caledonia and the Seychelles, since these are very unique islands from a palm growing perspective. There is no particular separation for the rest of the Old World palms.

Some of the more unusual aspects of the garden include three Lodoicea maldivica palms planted from seed in 1999, a grove of approximately 75 Carpoxylon macrospermum, numerous Dypsis species (a number of which remain unidentified), a large number of Areca, Clinostigma, Licuala, Neoveitchia and Pelagodoxa, as well as many others.

The Palms section of this website holds links to the many genera represented at Lundkvist Palm Garden, including photo galleries and information on the palms.

Bo-Göran and Karolyn Lundkvist bought the initial three acres in February 1996, and two additional acres were acquired in 1997 and 2001. The first palms planted at Lundkvist Palm Garden were two Pinanga caesia palms, planted in March 1996.

"I'll never forget when I planted those two palms. It had been raining hard every afternoon for several weeks, preventing me from getting my first palms in the ground. I had identified a good location for the two Pinangas, and as I'm deep in the rainforest in a bulky raincoat, it was as if the sky opened up, and despite the raincoat I was absolutely drenched. But I was determined to finish planting the two palms, no matter what! And I did!"

-Bo-Göran Lundkvist on planting the first palms