Euphorbia celastroides (ʻAkoko)
Euphorbiaceae | Native Hawaiian
Shrub-like, 2-6 ft tall
Dry areas, with partial/full
sun and drained soil
The name ʻAkoko comes from the Hawaiian word “koko,” meaning blood, since the leaves turn red before they fall off. Also, the plant “bleeds” a milky sap when cut. Native Hawaiians used the red leaves to make a tea for women after menstruation or childbirth to help them recover. It has been confirmed the red leaves have a higher concentration of iron than other
When the leaves are about to fall off they turn yellow, and then red.