Anyone with a sunny and dry spot on their property could consider planting the native Hawaiian plant known as Pua Kala (Argemone glauca). The plant produces conspicuous white or yellow flowers that mature into eye-catching grayish-green pods for most of the year.
It thrives on rocky, sunny, and dry areas of low to medium altitude on Hawaii’s leeward sides and high-altitude subalpine regions in the mountains. The genus has about 30 members and belongs to the plant family Papaveraceae (Poppy family).
The conspicuous flowers are 7.6 cm (3 inches) or wider. They have 6 crinkled, delicate, and broad white petals, several orange-yellow stamens, and a deep purple lobed stigma.
The flowers only last a day and are followed by green, upright, elongated, prickly, dark brown pods that open at the tip to release the seeds. The leaves are blue-green with whitish lobed veins, alternate, deeply pinnate, covered with small thorns, and fringed with more prominent thorny teeth.
The stems are upright, covered, and branched with yellowish thorns.