October  2014

Volume: 6 Issue: 10

The Last Stand
 One of the only places left in the world where these endangered birds can be found is right here nesting in our forest.
 Photo courtesy of Jack Jeffrey
Help provide a home for our native birds. Adopt a Koa Legacy Tree today.
Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods Launches New Public Charity: The Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative  

By Jennifer Sudick
October 1, 2014

HLH LLC, a sustainable reforestation company, has turned over its permanent reforestation division to Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative (HLRI), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. HLRI will continue HLH LLC's work of establishing, maintaining and protecting endemic Hawaiian forest ecosystems.


HLRI will continue to work with more than 340 charities, 70 Legacy Partners and tens of thousands of individual tree sponsors who have helped make this project so successful. HLH and HLRI have planted more than 250,000 endemic koa, sandalwood and other rare and endangered Hawaiian species in the world's first Hawaiian Legacy Forest.  


"These forests will not only be environmentally sustainable, but financially self-supporting as well--both now and in the future," said John Henshaw, director of HLRI. Through proprietary state-of -the-art technologies and methodologies, HLRI will work with landowners to develop and maintain permanent forestlands, protect our endangered species, sequester carbon and recharge watershed. Once planted, these trees become living memorials which are then sponsored by businesses and individuals who wish to donate a portion of the proceeds to their favorite charities.


"Many charitable organizations have discovered the Legacy Tree Program TM is an excellent fundraising mechanism and a unique way to raise money for their cause while helping heal the planet at the same time," said John Farias, HLRI director.


Legacy Trees can be sponsored to honor an individual, celebrate an event or memorialize a loved one. For each tree sponsorship, HLRI donates $20 to the charity or organization of the sponsor's choice. Guests also have a chance to visit this forest (for a fee) through their award-winning Hawaiian Legacy Tours, www.HawaiianLegacyTours.com  which provide a unique opportunity to take a tour, plant a Legacy Tree, and track its growth online for years to come.


Every tree is equipped with a proprietary RFID geo-tagging system that provides ongoing growth, maintenance, genealogy, and carbon sequestration data. This technology allows each Legacy Tree sponsor to track their tree over time, and store information about that person or event, creating a living monument and making the Hawaiian Legacy Forest the most intricately mapped forest in the world. Learn more about HLRI at www.LegacyTrees.org.

Making a Difference: Four Tourism Projects Win Society American Travel Writers Phoenix Awards 

October 6, 2014

Four tourism projects recently won Phoenix Awards from the Society of American Travel Writers.


Winners of the 2014 Phoenix Awards include a non-profit organization aimed at restoring and sustaining the beauty of Hawaii, a foundation with the goal of preserving the renowned art deco-style of architecture in America's heartland, a Chinese cultural retreat that provides an example of a respected model for sustainable cultural tourism and America's largest family estate which has been preserved and maintained as a National Historic Landmark.


The Phoenix Awards were created by SATW in 1969 to recognize conservation and preservation efforts of individuals and organizations as they relate to travel. The four winning tourism projects are:


The Linden Centre

The Linden Centre is a nationally protected building - the Yang Family Courtyard in the Himalayan foothills of Southwest China - that has been restored into a cultural retreat for guests interested in learning more about local customs such as culinary, painting, writing, photography, holistic health and antique appreciation.

Established in 2008 by American-born, yet long-time Chinese residents, Brian and Jeanee Linden, the historic hotel has been authentically preserved and facilitates cross-cultural understanding by engaging local residents in guest programming.

 The Linden Centre is a respected model for sustainable cultural tourism in China, and the owners often confer with provincial and national government officials on prudent and appropriate tourism development alternatives to current mass-tourism models.


In addition to The Linden Centre, the Lindens have opened two other sites: The Education Annex, home to a series of innovative learning programs, including the Sidwell Friends' semester program and Shanghai American School's Micro Campus; and The Linden Commons, which houses ceramics and painting studios, a cooking school, restaurants, spa and 14 suites. The latter, also a national relic, is one of the most pristine examples of pre-Revolutionary architecture in Southwest China.

Of the four awards granted this year, The Linden Centre was only non US-based recipient.


Hawaiian Legacy Restoration Initiative (HLRI)

Since its inception four years ago, HLRI - the non-profit arm of Hawaii Island-based sustainable forestry company, Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods - has planted more than 250,000 endemic koa, sandalwood and other endangered Hawaiian species across more than 650 acres on the upper slopes of the Mauna Kea volcano on the Island of Hawaii. Guests of the newly launched Legacy Tours can now plant their own koa Legacy Tree and visit the Legacy Forest.


Through a combination of revenue streams - including tree sponsorship, tree planning eco-tours and certified carbon credits - HLRI has provided debt-free reforestation, environmental and cultural education to the public.


Click here for full article:Making A Difference

Koa Reforestation A Living Legacy Of Trees On The Big Island  

San Francisco Gate 
By Jeanne Cooper
October 24, 2014


Perhaps the coolest souvenir from Hawaii these days is one that people always leave behind, some 5,000 feet above the sea. Instead of gathering dust at home, these living mementos provide food for endangered native birds, keep soil from washing onto coral reefs, retain water in the watershed and offset vacationers' carbon footprint. Some even serve as unique reminders of lost loved ones.


These souvenirs are endemic koa trees, planted on 1,200 acres on the slopes of the Big Island's Mauna Kea. And thanks to GPS and Google Earth, those who support the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative can watch online as the koa tree they either personally planted or funded grows taller every year.


The idea for planting "legacy trees" on the Big Island, along with harvestable koa as an investment, came in 2008 from former securities manager and corporate consultant Jeff Dunster and his longtime business partner Darrell Fox, who has a background in oceanography. "When I was in graduate school, I worked with a coral reef biologist, who said the way to protect a reef is to plant a forest," Fox says.


It costs $60 to sponsor the planting of a koa seedling, and $20 of that price is donated to the buyer's favorite nonprofits and another $1 to the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust. Small-group tours of the koa nursery and forest, which include the cost of planting a tree, start at $110.


Guests of the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai, which was an early partner of the program, have already contributed 20,000 legacy trees. The resort's new optional $8-per-stay conservation fee also funds legacy tree planting, which offsets the carbon footprint of guests' travel, according to Robert Whitfield, the resort's general manager.


Tom Wilmer, a travel writer and podcaster who lives in Morro Bay (San Luis Obispo County) and grew up in Palo Alto, was so impressed by the initiative that he successfully nominated it for the Society of American Travel Writers' prestigious Phoenix Award, which rewards conservation and preservation efforts.


Click here for full article: Koa Reforestaton

Entreeprener Corner      Jeff Dunster A
By Jeffrey Dunster

The Eye of The Storm-again...


Two months ago, the Hawaiian Islands received a visit from tropical storm Eselle. This prompted many concerned tree owners to inquire about the condition of their trees after the storm. Although we received heavy winds and heavy rains just as predicted, the trees were absolutely fine. These trees were unaffected because this is the environment that they have been enduring for thousands of years and it is part of their nature to handle this sort of thing. 


Other trees (non-native species) did not fare so well. Many eucalyptus and albizia trees were uprooted and snapped like twigs, creating more than $50,000,000 of damage in the State of Hawaii.  These trees were not endemic to Hawaii. This is not their natural environment and therefor were much more vulnerable. Any time you go against the natural order of things you increase your risk.


I used this natural disaster as an analogy to explain how investments are also susceptible to "man-made" storms; and that these storms can be much more deadly.   

 Here are a couple of excerpts from that newsletter:


Like the eucalyptus, if the investment is not suited to withstand the challenges of the environment, if it is not firmly rooted, the winds of adversity can create misery for the investor.  


The U.S. stock market is a prime example:  many people are not aware of how shallow the roots of this bull market really are and the huge storm that looms on the horizon.


Frankly, I don't know how anyone could accurately predict when this will occur because there are too many unknown variables. What you can be certain of, is that the government cannot and will not continue on this track indefinitely.  I also know that when they do decide to pull the plug, Wall Street insiders will know before you and will rush to sell everything they own. All of your gains will evaporate before you can hit the "SELL" button on your own computer.


Fast Forward to Today...


If You Keep Doing What You Are Doing,

Then You Will Keep Getting What You Are Getting -A. Einstein


October saw stockholders take another beating. In September the Dow Jones Industrial Average stood at 17,279.74 and in less than a month, dropped more than 1000 points -wiping out all of the gains made in 2014.  The investment gurus all sang a chorus of "We Shall Overcome" and encouraged everyone to stay the course and ride out the temporary setbacks. Although the market recovered, the constant wild swings indicate a very unstable environment. At some point you have to wonder if these folks have moved from endurance to bullheadedness. The definition if insanity is to keep doing the same thing over and over...and expecting a different result.


Sleeping Well While the Winds Blow


You tree owners on the other hand... are (according to a growing number of sources) some of the most savvy investors in the world today. While hardwood prices throughout the world have been on the rise, koa prices are climbing faster than just about all of them. You have not only invested in an appreciating commodity (even by the most ultra-conservative estimates, koa prices rise more than 120% in the past 5 years), you have helped create a sustainable thriving endemic ecosystem, created permanent green jobs in some of Hawaii's most under-employed areas, protected watershed, protected our reefs by reducing runoff, sequestered carbon and brought back the endangered Hawaiian Hawk and Hawaiian Owl into this forest.  You exemplify how to "do well while doing good". 


These trees continue to grow unaffected by the man-made storms in the financial world.  They do not care about the latest scare. They have never heard of a NASDAQ bubble, a war on terror or "too big to fail". Trees are biological...they grow. As the world supply of tropical hardwoods continues to shrink and world demand continues to grow, you can sleep well at night.


Possibility of 2016 to be Our Final Year for Planting Investment Trees


Part of the success of this project has been based on our strict criteria for where we plant investment trees. We select only the best of the best lands for our investment trees. Given our current landholdings we expect that we will run out of land that meets that criteria this coming year. Rather than compromise our standards, we will discontinue that component of our operations once these lands are gone.


We will still continue and expand on the Legacy Tree permanent reforestation model through our public charity "The Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative". Through this entity, we expect to plant another 1,000,000 trees.  www.LegacyTrees.org


I wanted to say mahalo for everyone's unwavering support in this project.  This has been a large undertaking and it took all of us to make it successful. I want to thank each and every tree owner for your critical role in creating this unique forest. This success is yours. This model is now being studied by foresters, businesses and governments around the world as the future template for reforestation everywhere. One day, you will be telling your grandkids about this.


Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.

 ~Margaret Meade

Lone Koa Over 4 Years
Lone Koa Over 4 Years


             From The Field         Darrell Fox A1 

By Darrell Fox, COO        

Lava, the Hot Topic on Everyone's Mind

Everyone you talk to on Hawaii Island seems to be focused on the most recent update to the lava flow currently threatening Pahoa Village.  It has been a hard couple of months for the Puna district with a strike by Hurricane Iselle and near miss by Hurricane Ana.  The current lava flow started moving in their direction on June 27th of this year.  Unlike a hurricane that builds over a week and is past one way or another, the lava flow is a very slow motion event that builds in everyone's consciousness over months.  As of this writing the lava flow has crossed Cemetery Road and has entered the first of residential lots in Pahoa.  It is less than mile from the center of town and moving at an average of 100-200 yards a day.  There is no rush on Home Depot to buy plywood to board up windows, no run on bottled water at Costco and no empty generator isles at all the home centers.  All you can do is walk away when the time comes.  Hopefully the path through the town will be narrow and the heart of this historic village will be left intact. 

When we set up HLH the threat of volcanic activity was carefully examined.   The following map from the Atlas of Hawai'i published by the University of Hawaii Press shows the lava flow risk zones of Hawaii Island.

In this map you can see that the summit and rift zones of Kilauea and Mauna Loa comprise the greatest hazard and have been repeatedly active in the past two centuries.  Greater that 25% of the areas of zone 1 have been covered by lava in the last 200 years.  This compares with 15-25% in zone 2 and 1-5% in zone 3.  The current lava flow entering Pahoa is in zones 1 & 2.  The HLH project area is on Mauna Kea in zone 8.  Zones 7-9 are on the dormant volcano of Mauna Kea and the extinct volcano of Kohala.  Zone 8 has seen no volcanic activity in the last 10,000 years. 


Field Preparation for 2015 Planting Site


We have completed the bulk of the invasive species removal and we have finished the mapping of the fields.  The mapping delineates two basic strata for our management purposes.  The areas with the best soil conditions and the most level terrain are set aside for the investment trees.  In the map below the areas suitable for investment trees are indicated in yellow.  The invasive trees in within the yellow outlines have been removed since the time of this satellite image.  The nursery stock for these areas is also carefully selected from seeds collected from only koa trees with the best growth form.

The remaining area outside the yellow will be planted with genetically diverse legacy trees.  As these seedlings become established over the next few years, we will interplant with several dozen native species of trees and shrubs that would have been components of the native forest once covering this land.  As you can also see from this view the task of keeping invasive species at bay is a continuous effort that will go on for many years.

Once again thank you all for your interest and support.  Let's keep the residents of Pahoa in our hearts.



Waldorf School Plants Legacy Trees


We would like to thank Waldorf School who spent the day with us planting koa legacy trees and helping reforest Hawaii.

Please see video below for a glimpse of their planting efforts.  

Honolulu Waldorf School and the Hawaiian Legacy Forest
Honolulu Waldorf School and the Hawaiian Legacy Forest
In This Issue
Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods Launches New Public Charity: The Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative
Making a Difference: Four Tourism Projects Win SATW Phoenix Awards
Koa Reforestation A Living Legacy Of Trees On Big Island
Entreeprener Corner
From The Field
Waldorf School Plants Legacy Trees


Price Increase



November 1st
  2014 our 100 tree units will increase to $10,872.00 per unit due to the increasing cost of fuel, materials and labor.

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Miss Hawaii Organization
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