Our Islands, Our Future

Treecovery Hawaiʻi Inc., a new Hawaiʻi-based non-profit, has been working with the Army Corps to help keep surviving trees in the Lahaina and Kula burn zones healthy while also providing soil remediation in the area. In addition to caring for existing trees, the organization is working with 14 partners to plant and oversee the growth of 30,000 new trees over the next several years, at no cost to the community. Treecovery was founded by Duane Sparkman, chairman of the Maui County Arborist Committee and the 2021 recipient of the Mālama i ka ʻĀina Award. The award is presented annually by the Maui Invasive Species Committee to recognize efforts in the landscape and agricultural community to keep invasive species out of Maui County.

Sparkman wears many hats. He is known for his work in sustainable landscaping as well as his countless volunteer hours serving multiple cultural and conservation organizations across the island. Sparkman worked his way up to becoming part-owner of a large landscaping company that maintained 65 acres of resorts along Maui’s coastlines. He worked at Haleakalā National Park and sits on the board of directors of Maui Cultural Lands. Sparkman’s consulting company, Edaphic Perspective, assists homeowners, landowners, and municipalities as they transition to organic landscape practices. He is also the project manager for a 72-acre Hawaiian cultural reserve called Kipuka Olowalu and partners with Maui Nui Marine Resource Council to assist them with their organic land management division.

“Treecovery represents my hope to keep trees in the Maui wildfire zones alive and to provide trees to the residents and businesses in Lahaina and Kula that lost their trees in the fires,” said Sparkman. “Treecovery also stems from my passion in seeing thriving and healthy ecosystems from mauka to makai. I believe in sharing my knowledge with other organizations and people throughout Maui. It’s important to me to respect and advocate for Hawaiian culture while improving sustainable landscape practices within Hawaiʻi’s resort industry.”

Sparkman added, “There is a lot of work to do, and we always need volunteers. Currently, numerous properties have been cleared for replanting in Kula. While caring for trees, we are growing an ‘ohana that we are all part of. We are working towards a healthy Maui Nui for generations to come.”

From the ʻāina, we learn who we are, and what we put into its restoration, we get back.
Duane Sparkman, Founder and President, Treecovery