In response to inquiries about Limahuli Garden’s condition following the extremely heavy rainfall and subsequent flooding that has severely impacted a number of Kaua‘i communities, we’d like to share the following:
First, thankfully our staff and their families have survived and are doing their best to begin what will be a long recovery process as they take care of their families and help their friends and neighbors. Second, Limahuli Garden itself fared reasonably well considering the extraordinary rainfall (officially 28 inches in 24 hours on some parts of Kaua‘i’s north shore, and likely much more unofficially). One 93-year-old lifelong resident said he had never seen anything like it.
Limahuli Garden grounds, the living collections, and most of the buildings suffered no significant damage. Good planning and well-placed structures helped avoid damage and destruction. Unfortunately, roads, stream crossings, culverts within the garden, and some areas close to the Limahuli Stream were very badly damaged by the torrent of water, boulders, and other debris that washed down the Limahuli Stream during the April 14-15 flooding.
The road between Hanalei and Hā‘ena — a lifeline for those communities and the sole access to Limahuli Garden and Preserve — has been severely damaged. There have been reports of 20 or more landslides and many in the area are cut off from road access for the foreseeable future.
There is much on Kaua‘i and at Limahuli Garden that will need to be repaired, replaced, or rebuilt — all of which will require much time and money. As recovery efforts across affected areas of Kaua‘i continue, many of our friends and neighbors are facing very significant challenges. Sadly, some have lost much more than we have and the days ahead will be difficult. Fortunately, Kaua‘i fosters strong communities that care for one another. Families, friends, neighbors, as well as strangers, come together in times like these. We are extremely proud of our staff who live in Hā‘ena and are helping lead the community’s ongoing response to this crisis.
Pacific Island communities like ours are strong. We are resilient. And we will get through this together. We are confident that by helping one another, we will successfully rebuild and recover, creating a better future for all together.
For those who wish to contribute to recovery efforts specifically at Limahuli Garden, a support page has been set up on our website https://ntbg.org/gardens/limahuli/flood
Thank you for your concern about our Garden, our communities, and our island.