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Hawaii Island Palm Society

Order Your T-Shirt Today For Pick Up August 28th at the Welsch and Davenport Garden Tour.

Pay online, or select Invoice Me to pay by check or at the event.

Upcoming Events


June 2021

Become a member

The Hawaii Island Palm Society, (HIPS), is a great group of people who simply love palms and who strive to promote their use in private gardens and the general landscape. Our goal is to perpetuate rare and endangered palms worldwide, through the sharing of seeds and plants. Our organization is affiliated with the International Palm Society and is dedicated to community outreach and education.  Among other community services, HIPS volunteers plan, plant, and help maintain the outstanding palm collection at the Panaewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens in Hilo.  

Members enjoy private garden tours, lectures, electronic newsletter, an annual banquet and palm auction, use of an extensive reference library, and discount pricing with BEI Agricultural Products in Hilo.  New members are eligible for open garden days, a chance to meet with established HIPS members in their gardens.

Join us

Open Garden Days for New Members

Established HIPS members welcome our newest members by inviting them into their private gardens for a more personal opportunity to learn about growing palms in Hawaii.  If you would like to offer your garden or would like to participate in a tour, contact Rick Kelley at

Thanks to community vaccinations we look forward to eased pandemic restrictions.  Event details will be provided as they are confirmed, thank you for your patience.

Upcoming events

    • 28 Aug 2021
    • (HAST)
    • 2 sessions
    • Directions sent 1 week prior to event

     David Davenport and Robert Welsch purchased their 11.25 acre Kalapana property in 2005, then started selectively clearing and planting in 2007. Robert was working as a landscape designer back in New York. He would come to Hawaii each winter to continue the design and planting work until finally, in 2014, David and Robert built their home among the many new plantings. The planting never ends and the gardens continue to grow especially now that David and Robert are both retired and live full time in Hawaii. 

    Left: Double rainbow gracing the courtyard between the main house and ohana. Hedge planting includes Dypsis pembana, Dypsis laneofola, Caryota gigas, Roystonia oleracea, and Kerriodoxa elegans, among others.  Right: Incredible scale of a Caryota gigas leaf.

    Their Indonesian-inspired home is nestled in an ancient Hawaiian Ohi’a and Uluhe forest with extensive ornamental palm, bamboo, orchid, bromeliad, citrus and tropical gardens. 

    Over the years, the palm collection has been enhanced with purchases from the Lundkvist garden; Jeff Marcus at Floribunda; Jan Anderson; Bill Austin, Jerry Hunter at Rancho Soledad, and more. In 2017, David and Robert purchased most of the palm collection of former Palm Society member Joseph Tucker which added substantially to the depth and breadth of the palm collection. 

     HIPS will provide cold drinks.  Members will be informed via email when online registration opens two weeks prior to the event.

    As this will be our first in person meeting of 2021, we will be confirming the slate of officers of the board at the beginning of each tour session.  Confirmation is usually done at the annual dinner in February, however due to the pandemic that event was cancelled.  The slate of officers include:  President - Rick Kelley, Vice President - Sara Wagner, Secretary - Mike Arends, and Treasurer - Chris Friesen.  Learn more about the candidates and other board members here.

Latest Multimedia and Lending Library Books


Multimedia presentations created by Dean Ouer.  Click images above to view via his Tropiscape website.

Do you wonder who volunteers their time for board meetings?  Get to know your board members here.  If you are interested in joining the HIPS board, contact Rick Kelley at 

Contact Us:  

P.O. Box 1585, Kea'au, Hi   96749

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