Audubon Botanical Garden

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During our trip to the North Shore we stopped at the Audubon Botanical Garden. They were pretty cool for botanical gardens, mostly because of the waterfall and pool at the end. You could actually swim there, but there were lots of signs warning against something – lepto-something-rather (quote from movie Endless Summer: “Nobody knows what it is, but you know you have it when your fingernails fall out!” - which worried Nikki to no end). There is a large variety of plants from other lands. The environments were also realistically replicated. When we walked through the Lord Howe section, I actually thought I was on Lord Howe. There was a large bit on the Piper Family, of which pepper and Kava are family members. Kava is a very strong intoxicating drink made from the roots of the Kava plant. Kava is mostly drunk in Fiji. One of the most interesting trees that I saw was the Cannonball Tree. The fruits grow directly from the trunk, and are so large that the resemble cannonballs, hence the name. They are native to South America. There was also a Hawaiian fishing shrine. The natives would build a small shrine, then say some prayers, and go fishing. This was to prevent him from sinking and to get him a lot of fish. When the fishermen came back at the end of the day the would put their first fish on the shrine to keep the god in good favour.