Garden Closed

Due to the closure of the U.S. Capitol Campus to the public, the U.S. Botanic Garden continues to have altered operations.  Bartholdi Fountain and Gardens and the Terrace Gardens are open while the Conservatory and gated outdoor gardens are temporarily closed. Please monitor for updates on operating status. Many resources can be accessed online, including educational materials, virtual tours, and online programs. Connect with resources from home at

Hawaiian caper

Capparis sandwichiana
Plant Botanical Name: 
Capparis sandwichiana
Full sun
Plant Soil Type: 
Very well drained soil
Plant Moisture Requirements: 
Low water requirments
Plant Threat Level: 

The Hawaiian caper is native to Hawaii and is sparsely found on the main islands growing in coral and rocky soil along the coast and just slightly inland. Although there are likely thousands of plants remaining in the wild it is estimated that there has been a decline of at least 10 percent over the past decade. C. sandwichiana has been adversely affected by the development of the Hawaiian coastal and lowland areas. There is no modern use for the Hawaiian caper, but it is related to the Mediterranean caper whose small buds, caperberries are pickled in vinegar or preserved with salt for culinary uses. Traditionally this plant was used medicinally as a treatment for injuries to joints, bones and skin.