On sandy shores the cosmopolitan Ipomoea pes-caprae occurs together with Boerhavia repens, Reichardia picroides, Vigna marina and several other hardy plants. However, the adjacent sand dunes provide habitat for a richer assembage of species. Here can be found several species able to bind or stabilize sand including Heliotropium anomalum, Vitex ovata, Scaevola taccada, Sporobolus virginicus and the endemic Nama sandwicensis (Hydrophyllaceae) and Sesbania tomentosa (Fabaceae). Much of the sand is composed of coral fragments, but on Hawai’i there is also black, volcanic sand, which has a very poor flora mainly comprising Ipomoea pes-caprae.


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