Plant Pono is the result of a caring collaboration of nonprofits across the Hawaiian islands. The site educates the public about the difference between native and invasive plants in Hawaii and which local businesses are selling pono (or safe) plants. Its impact on the future of Hawaii’s preservation is critical and we are honored to be able to play a small role in developing this important site.
We had not planned or budgeted to completely rework our PlantPono website, but when a security weakness allowed our site to be hacked and destroyed, this unexpected challenge became an opportunity. We had already worked with Websites with Aloha to design and maintain our main organization site at BIISC, so we immediately turned to them to ask if they could build us a new, improved PlantPono site.
Our PlantPono program seeks to help Big Island and Kauai residents make gardening and landscaping choices that are good for our island environment, and promote businesses that have committed to being Pono in their planting. Building this site was not an easy project, because the main functions we needed required searches through thousands of records on different plants and their characteristics to return suggestions based on the userʻs preferences. But not only were Beth and her team able to build in the search functions weʻd had previously on the old site, they were able to add several new ones! With the new search functionality, users can look up so many aspects of plants – desired color, growth form, environment, more – making the new site a much more useful tool.
We were also excited to be able to get a fresh, updated look for the page. The clean and simple design allows the pictures of the individual plants to really stand out and make an impression. Our old site had been funded by a one-time state grant, which prevented us from doing anything but the most basic edits and additions, so the look and feel became stagnant over time (not to mention allowing the site to become vulnerable to hacking!). As a grant-funded program that lacks steady funding from year to year, that wasn’t a workable model for us, as we don’t always have money available to pay a developer to make basic changes. Having the ability to keep the site fresh and add new content without being hampered by budgetary restraints was just a really critical piece of the puzzle for us. With this new WordPress site designed by WWA, our staff can add blog posts, edit our Pono business lists, and add entirely new pages, all on our own.
We couldnʻt be more proud of our new site! Thanks to Websites with Aloha for working so hard on this challenging project and developing such a beautiful and useful product for us!”Franny Brewer,
Big Island Invasive Species Committee Communications Director