Kamani, or True Kamani, Calophyllum inophyllum, is a Non-native tree from Polynesia. False Kamani, Terminalia Catappa, is a naturalized non-native tree, both found throughout the islands. Perhaps because the seed floats when dry, it is easily spread in diverse areas around the islands. Once you know what to look for, it is easy to tell the difference between these two species. The cut wood, however, is difficult to differentiate, at least for me. The grain and figure in Kamani, as well as the color, is very distinctive. It turns well but the center area of a branch or trunk is prone to being soft and punky. True Kamani is often used as a street tree in Honolulu and can be found along Dillingham Boulevard and at the main intersection in Kailua town.
True Kamani: Kailua Road near Oneawa Street.
Detail view of tree with green and brown seeds before they drop.
True Kamani: Leaf and seed pods. The seeds are about the size of golf balls, perhaps a bit smaller.
False Kamani tree roots. Roots are common with a habit of wall structures up to two feet above ground spreading around the trunk.
Adjacent False Kamani but with a different root structure.
False Kamani leaf. Can be the predominant color on the tree.
False Kamani pods. Because seed pods are often present around the tree, looking for the seed shape is the easiest way to identify the tree.
Kamani Wood pieces: As mentioned, I cannot tell whether the wood is from False or True Kamani without seeing the tree first.
Calabash shape. This piece has a lot of figure and chatoyance.
Small bowl approximately 8″ in diameter.
Kamani Box is on the lower left.