Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Justicia aurea
Schltdl., Acanthaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Other Latin names:  Justicia umbrosa Benth.

Common name(s): [more details]

English: lion's tail

Fijian: afomba

Habit:  herb

Description:  "Stout, coarse, erect, herbaceous or suffrutescent plants to 3 m. tall, usually branched, the branches obtusely tetragonous or sub terete, puberulent or glabrous; leaves on petioles 1-10 cm. long, the blades lance-oblong to broadly ovate, 6-40 cm. long, 3-21 cm. wide, acute to long-acuminate, rounded to acute and abruptly long-decurrent at the base, thin, glabrous on both surfaces or puberulent beneath; inflorescences many-flowered, dense, usually forming a narrow, terminal panicle 5-45 cm. long, the branches puberulent; bracts linear or linear-lanceolate, acute, 1-2.3 cm. long, green, puberulent; bracteoles linear, acuminate, equaling or shorter than the bracts; calyx lobes 5, lanceolate or linear-lanceolate, 5-8 mm. long, puberulent, pilosulous, or almost glabrous; corolla 4.5-6 cm. long, pale to bright yellow, puberulent or pilosulous outside, the lips about 2.5 cm. long, the upper one narrow, erect, entire, incurved and galeiform above, the lower lip with 3 short lobes about 2 mm. long; thecae 2-3 mm. long, very minutely calcarate; pollen 2-porate, bilateral, isopolar, with 2-3 rows of unevenly spaced insulae on either side of each aperture; capsule 1.5-2 cm. long, puberulent" (Standley et al., 1974; pp. 383-384).

Habitat/ecology:  In Guatemala (native), "damp or wet thickets and mixed forest, 50-2,400 m" (Standley et al., 1974; pp. 383-384).  In Fiji, "naturalized in wet, forested areas"  (Smith, 1991; p. 138).  "Reported as infesting crop plantations and forest clearings"  (Meyer & Lavergne, 2004; p. 338).

Propagation:  Vegetatively (Meyer & Lavergne, 2004; p. 345).

Native range:  Mexico and Central America; cultivated and naturalized elsewhere (GRIN).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Viti Levu Island introduced
invasive
Smith, Albert C. (1991) (pp. 137-138)
As Justicia umbrosa Benth. Vouchers cited: DA 16993; DA 5903, Parks 20165, DA L11420, Tillespie 2519
"Presumably introduced as an ornamental and perhaps cultivated in villages".
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaua‘i Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (1995) (voucher ID: PTBG 17798)
Taxon name on voucher: Justicia aurea
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaua‘i Island   Smithsonian Institution (U.S.A. District of Columbia. Washington.) (year unknown) (voucher ID: US 3141439)
Taxon name on voucher: Justicia aurea Schltdl.
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island   Bishop Museum (U.S.A. Hawaii. Honolulu.) (1961) (voucher ID: BISH 20064)
Taxon name on voucher: Justicia aurea Schltdl.
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Archipelago
Île Grande Terre introduced
cultivated
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 8)
As Jacobinia aurea (Schiechtd.) Hemsley. Voucher cited: MacKee 40659
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)
Australia (continental) introduced
Randall, R. P. (2007) (p. 266)
Costa Rica
Costa Rica
Costa Rica (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
El Salvador
El Salvador
El Salvador (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Guatemala
Guatemala
Guatemala (Republic of) native
Standley, Paul C./Williams, Louis O./Gibson, Dorothy Nash (1974)
Honduras
Honduras
Honduras (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
pas, Jalisco, Michoacan, Oaxaca, Queretaro, San Luis Potosi, Veracruz
Nicaragua
Nicaragua
Nicaragua (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Panama
Panama
Panama (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Perú
Perú
Perú (Republic of) introduced
cultivated
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)


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This page was created on 23 MAR 2013 and was last updated on 8 APR 2013.