Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Arum italicum
Mill., Araceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Common name(s): [more details]

English: Italian arum, Italian cuckoo-pint, Italian lords-and-ladies

French: gouet d'Italie

Habit:  herb

Description:  "Erect tuberous perennials, 25-60 cm high, leaves appearing in late autumn and through winter; flowering in spring, the leafless scape with scarlet berries conspicuous in late summer. Tuber c. 4 cm in diameter, producing small tubers. Leaves large; laminae hastate, to 30 cm long, dark green with lighter yellow-green midrib and main veins; petioles 20-40 cm long, lower half membranous, sheathing, purple-tinged. Spathe ± translucent, pale whitish-green, purple-tinged near base especially on inside, c. 30 x 15 cm; scape < petiole, greenish to reddish. Spadix ± 1/3 of spathe; basal female zone ± 2 cm long, a few sterile flowers above them; upper male zone c. 0.8 cm long, with narrow band of sterile flowers below terminal, stipitate, yellow sterile appendage. Berries 1 cm in diameter, bright red"  (Healy & Edgar, 1980; 76).

Habitat/ecology:  In New Zealand, "a persistent colony- or clump-forming garden escape, A. italicum is established in older gardens, about hedgerows and farm shelter trees, in old farm orchards, and in grassland near homesteads and on sites of former domestic gardens"  (Healy & Edgar, 1980; 76).

Propagation:  Seed and tubers.  "It is most aggressive in gardens and cultivated sites, new plants developing from small tubers, of which up to 30 arise from each main tuber; by contrast, increase of clumps in undisturbed grassland is slow by vegetative means. Spread is by seed too, and observations in New Zealand suggest that domestic poultry and wild birds may be agents of dispersal: seed viability is high, but seedlings tolerate little competition"  (Healy & Edgar, 1980; 76).

Native range:  Northern Africa (including Madeira and Canary Islands), Europe, western Asia (GRIN).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más a Tierra (Robinson Crusoe Island) introduced
invasive
cultivated
Atkinson, Rachel/Sawyer, John (2011)
subsp. italicum
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más a Tierra (Robinson Crusoe Island) introduced
invasive
cultivated
Danton, Philippe/Perrier, Christophe/Martinez Reyes, Guido (2006) (pp. 474-475, 521, 551)
Voucher cited: Danton I(5/46)1388. "En RC, se encuentra en algunos jardines del pueblo de San Jan Bautista en RC también fuera de ellos".
Pacific Rim
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Australia
Australia (continental)
New South Wales introduced
invasive
cultivated
National Herbarium of New South Wales (2013)
"Cultivated; locally naturalized".
New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand (country) introduced
invasive
cultivated
Healy, A. J./Edgar, E. (1980) (p. 76)
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (Oregon) introduced
U.S. Dept. Agr., Nat. Res. Cons. Serv. (2013)
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (California) introduced
U.S. Dept. Agr., Nat. Res. Cons. Serv. (2013)
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (Washington) introduced
U.S. Dept. Agr., Nat. Res. Cons. Serv. (2013)
Also reported from
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
United States (continental except west coast)
United States (other states)
United States (other states) introduced
U.S. Dept. Agr., Nat. Res. Cons. Serv. (2013)
Illinois, Missouri, North Carolina


Need more info? Have questions? Comments? Information to contribute? Contact PIER! (pier@hear.org)

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This page was created on 17 DEC 2010 and was last updated on 7 MAY 2017.