• Young unopened flowerheads can be eaten raw, steamed, or toasted.
  • Naviso can be used to control erosion.
  • The first harvest can be made 5 to 10 months after planting.

Saccharum edule

Naviso originates from the tropical climates of south-eastern Asia and is grown in various Pacific Islands, including Vanuatu. Naviso is a species of sugarcane. This grass has a fibrous stalk that is rich in sugar. It is perennial, meaning it lives for several years. It grows in vigorous clumps with three to four stalks. The stalks grow to 1.5 to 4 m in height and are often streaked with different colours, depending on the variety.


The leaves are pale green and are slightly hairy and rough.


The large flower clusters do not open. Instead, they remain enclosed in their leaf sheaths, creating a dense mass that is similar in size to a banana.


This species does not produce seeds. It reproduces using suckers that generate into new plants.

  • First fully open flower
  • Less than half the tree is in full flower
  • More than half the tree is in full flower
  • All of the tree is in full flower
  • No flowering
  • Less than half the tree has fruit
  • More than half the tree has fruit
  • All of the tree has fruit
  • No fruit
  • Green fruit present
  • Ripened fruit present

When to Look

  • Year round

Where to Look

  • Naviso is typically grown from sea level to around 2000 m.
  • It is commonly found in poorly drained valley bottoms, alluvial plains, or low-lying sites.

Similar Species

It differs from sugarcane in that the stem is much narrower and the leaves are thinner and more flexible.