The climate in Hawaii is tropical, but high mountains and the surrounding ocean moderate temperatures somewhat. Because of its mild winters, fruits and vegetables can be grown year-round. Plants grow rapidly, but plant diseases, nematodes, and insects can be a greater problem than other areas because of the warm temperatures, high humidity and the widespread commercial agriculture that has fostered pest species. Acidic soils are also challenging.
Because of Hawaii's unique growing conditions, it's important to plant varieties that are adapted to these conditions. Varieties that are adapted to mainland growing conditions may not do well.
The University of Hawaii has developed many fruit and vegetable varieties that are adapted to the unique growing conditions in Hawaii and are resistant to diseases that are common locally. Most of their seeds are not genetically modified, but their UH Rainbow Papaya is GMO.
Jane shares her experiences gardening in Maui including extensive gardening tips for many types of fruits, vegetables, grains, and herbs.