Posts Tagged With: pond cleaning

Clean the Pond

UPDATE: The next pond cleaning day is Saturday, March 17, from 8 a.m. to noon. The current tally on muck removed is 2,875 gallons.

Cleaning Waihonu, the pond at the heart of Lili`uokalani Gardens, is top of the maintenance priority list for Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens. Starting in October 2016, Friends and volunteers under the direction of board member Alton Okinaka have removed more than 2,700 gallons of mud, muck, and debris.

The next volunteer day is Saturday, January 27, from 8 a.m. to noon. There also are land-based chores for those who do not want to get in the pond. Some protective gear (gloves, tabi) are provided. Participants are advised to wear gardening clothes and closed-toe shoes.

debris from demolished homes and businesses ended up in Waihonu during the 1960 tsunami along with tons of mud (photo from the Pacific Tsunami Museum collection on the wall at Coqui’s restaurant Tsunami Room)

The effort has concentrated on removing muck immediately adjacent to the stone edging the pond and three feet from the edge into the pond. This will better enable future mechanized cleaning of the entire pond without further damaging the stone edge.

University of Hawaii-Hilo students, Hilo Y’s Men, and Representative Chris Todd join in the pond cleaning effort where the mud is de-watered before hauling to a nearby farm

Also on the removal list is an invasive seaweed called gorilla ogo (Gracilaria salicornia). As the invasive is removed, native seaweed growth is restored.

Repair of the stone edge around the pond including restoration of a suhama (smooth stone beach) on the bay side goes hand in hand with pond remediation. Having a healthy pond is part of restoring the more desirable fish populations.

Fourth graders from a pond science class in Keaukaha form a bucket brigade to help remove mud

To volunteer for this or future garden work days, please refer to the Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens page on Facebook or contact Alton Okinaka at or telephone (808) 383-4917.

More information on gorilla ogo is available here:

Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens is a 501(c)(3) non-profit operating on a Memorandum of Understanding with the County of Hawaii Department of Parks & Recreation. Friends work to provide maintenance on special projects, raise funds for capital improvements, and plan events to celebrate the centennial of the gardens 2017-2019.


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Help maintain and improve Lili`uokalani Gardens in Hilo

Volunteers are an essential part of maintaining and improving Hilo’s treasured cultural landscape, Lili`uokalani Gardens. The volunteer day for November is Saturday 11/18. Time is 8 a.m. to noon.

Lions Clubs will work in the shaded southern corner planting ground cover at the new stone setting near the Bicentennial Garden. Clyde Yoshida is overseeing that effort.

Workers from Pineback Landscaping, Hilton’s Crane Services, Fred’s Nursery, Mountain Meadows Nursery, Tamura Landscaping, and Hanatoyo Landscaping donated time and equipment and Jas. W. Glover Ltd. donated stones to a new stone setting project at the Southern corner of Lili`uokalani Gardens

Alton Okinaka will oversee continued efforts to remove muck from Waihonu, the pond at the heart of Lili`uokalani Gardens. Much of the muck was deposited in the pond by the 1960 tsunami. More than 2,650 gallons were removed in the past year and were given to a nearby farm.

Please wear gardening clothes and closed toe shoes. A few pairs of gloves are on hand, but if you have gloves, please bring them. Contact Alton Okinaka with any questions: Alton Okinaka <> or (808) 383-4917.

Refreshments and lunch will be served to all volunteers.

Nov. volunteers

November 2017 work areas: pond edge is on the ocean side of the red bridge

To keep in touch with Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens, please visit our page on Facebook.

Please refer to the Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens page on Facebook for current information on centennial events and volunteer work days.


Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens is a registered non-profit with 501(c)(3) status. The organization follows three paths: organizing volunteer maintenance, raising funds for capital improvements, and planning centennial events.

Lili`uokalani Gardens is composed of four parks in the Waiakea peninsula: Rakuen, Isles, Moku Ola (Coconut Island), and the 100-year-old Japanese-style landscape known to old timers as Nihon Koen and named in honor of the late Queen in 1917. The Gardens are under the care of the County of Hawaii Parks & Recreation Department, with which Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens has a written Memorandum of Understanding.

Any arrangements to rent park facilities or use the area for events such as weddings should be made directly with the County of Hawaii Parks & Recreation Department.

Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens welcome helpful comments. Scammers and spamers — don’t waste your time. All comments are moderated before posting.


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