LS Carnivorous plant

The mikinalo, or “to suck flies,” is Hawai‘i’s only carnivorous plant. It’s found only in the high-elevation Alaka‘i Swamp on Kaua‘i. This tiny flesh-eating sundew has close cousins in other northern-hemisphere swamps in the world. But unlike its relatives, the mikinalo doesn’t overwinter — hibernation for plants — it grows year-round.

A good snapshot may reveal a simple pleasure that otherwise goes unnoticed. The Local Snapshots is just a tiny collection of what Kaua‘i offers to locals and visitors. Indulge yourself. And if you have any suggestions or pictures, send it to


Maya arrived at Kaua‘i Humane Society about a year ago. She had three puppies, was very shy and scared, had worms and was too skinny. A family fostered Maya for four months, but couldn’t take her to the Mainland when they left. So Puhi resident Jan Underhill fostered Maya for the last eight months, and it was a labor of love to get Maya to open up. It took Jan three months just to stop Maya from hiding under the bed. She is still shy, but has made a lot of progress. Jan said she finally found a permanent home for Maya, though it’s not official yet — a lady in Kalaheo has committed to adopt her this month.


Marie Cassel’s strictly gluten-free restaurant, Sweet Marie’s Hawai‘i in Lihu‘e, can be a mind-bending experience for those who think gluten-free food is boring. Her Caesar salad is quite spicy — “It’s the garlic, babe,” she says, shouting across the room — and her selection of muffins are just two reasons to eat there. Here she holds a spinach lasagna with roasted garlic marinara sauce; to kill for. Who said pasta can’t be gluten free?


LS Mushroom

No, it’s not a Super Mario Brothers mushroom, and you will not get heart points if you pick it up. This is an actual 8-inch-tall mushroom at Berry Flat Trail in Koke‘e. If you find one of these, just let it be. It’s likely an amanita muscaria; has unpredictable effects and potentially dangerous if ingested — people have died from eating it.

LS Gabriela Taylor

Gabriela Taylor, world traveler, writer, artist, photographer (I’m sure I’m forgetting something), is one of those people who attract others without ever trying. Her house is a gathering place for all types of open minds. Here she poses with one of her sculptures, “Sun Swallowing the Moon,” and two of her photographs taken in Papua New Guinea.