Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

  [   PIER species lists  ]   [   PIER home  ]

Melinis minutiflora
P.Beauv., Poaceae
Click on an image for links to BIGGER PICTURES


Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Risk assessment results: 

Reject, score: 7 (Go to the risk assessment (Australia)).
High risk, score: 18 (Go to the risk assessment (Pacific)).

Other Latin names:  Melinis tenuinervis Stapf; Panicum melinus Trin.; Panicum minutiflorum (P. Beauv.) Raspail

Common name(s): [more details]

Chinese: tang mi cao

English: Brazilian stink grass, efwatakala grass, melinis, molasses grass, stink grass, wynne grass

French: herbe à miel, herbe à molasse, herbe molasse, herbe molasses, mélinis

Rapa Nui: mauku piro

Spanish: chopín, pasto de gordura, pasto hediondo, pasto miel

Tongan: puakatau

Habit:  grass

Description:  "Branching perennial [grass], the culms to 90 cm long, ascending; foliage viscid (sticky), fragrant, with odor like molasses; blades up to nearly 1 ft. long, often reddish, the ligule a row of hairs; panicles 10-20 cm long, slender, purplish when young; spikelets less than 2.5 mm long; sterile lemmas awned, the awn 12 mm long or less" (Stone, 1970; p. 200).

"Herbacée pérenne en touffe dense, atteignant 1 à 2 m de hauteur, reconnaissable à ses tiges et feuilles abondamment poilues et collantes à forte odeur d’huile, et ses inflorescences dressées rousses ou rougêatres" (Meyer, 2008; p. 20).

Habitat/ecology:  "This spreading, perennial mat grass smothers everything around it. Once established, it forms monotypic stands from rooted runners. It is considered a good forage grass and therefore is not a candidate for biological control. It is adapted to fire, and the dense mats are generally only partly consumed. Regeneration from the remaining portions is rapid, and colony expansion into adjacent burned areas generally follows. It is found from sea level to 1,500 m in dry and mesic environments" in Hawai‘i (Smith, 1985; p. 195), to 2000 m in French Polynesia.  In Hawai‘i, "naturalized and common in primarily dry to mesic, disturbed, usually open areas, 120-1,220 m"  (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 1562). "A serious pest in dryer environments because of sprawling growth and fire hazard in dry seasons"  (Motooka et al., 2003). 

"Espèce pionnière, colonisant les zones ouvertes et incendiées (il s’agit d’une plante pyrophile ou « pyrophyte », c’est-à-dire tolérante et adaptée aux incendies), elle n’est relativement pas consommée par les animaux (Cronk & Fuller, 1995)" (Meyer, 2008; p. 20).  In New Caledonia, "occupe en peuplements denses monospécifiques de grandes étendues de terrain. Peu commun aux Loyauté mais a été récolté à Tiga" (MacKee, 1994; p. 60).

Propagation:  The seeds are dispersed by wind.

Native range:  Africa; widely naturalized (GRIN).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
American Samoa
Tutuila Islands
Tutuila Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1985) (voucher ID: BISH 495534)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
Australia (Pacific offshore islands)
Lord Howe Island
Lord Howe Island introduced
Pickard, J. (1984) (p. 205)
Australia (Pacific offshore islands)
Lord Howe Island
Lord Howe Island introduced
invasive
Orchard, Anthony E., ed. (1994) (p. 22)
"Introduced, probably relatively recently, as a fodder grass". Voucher cited: J. Pickard 3531 (NSW)
Australia (Pacific offshore islands)
Norfolk Islands
Norfolk Island introduced
invasive
Orchard, Anthony E., ed. (1994) (p. 12)
"Introduced, probably relatively recently, as a fodder grass". Voucher cited: W.R. Sykes NI 547 (CHR)
Chile (offshore islands)
Rapa Nui (Easter) Island
Rapa Nui (Easter) Island (Isla de Pasqua) introduced
invasive
Meyer, Jean-Yves (2008) (pp. 20, 29)
"Lors de cette mission, nous avons observé des tapis denses monospécifiques sur la majeure partie de l’île (excepté sur le sommet de Maunga Terevaka), notamment autour de Rano Kau, Rano Aroi et Rano Raraku où l’espèce menace directement les sites archéologiques. Il s’agit selon notre expérience de l’invasion la plus sévère et la plus spectaculaire du mélinis dans une île du Pacifique" (Meyer, 2008; p. 20-21).
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (US)
Northern Mariana Islands
Rota Island introduced
Raulerson, L. (2006) (p. 10)
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
San Cristóbal Group
San Cristóbal Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
Santa Cruz Group
Santa Cruz Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Viti Levu Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1979) (p. 342)
Vouchers cited: DA 14349, DA 8318, DA 3525, DA 3526, DA 3615, DA 3617, DA 3659, DA 8009, DA 9170, DA 10139
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Viti Levu Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1965) (voucher ID: BISH 31713)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island introduced
invasive
Lorence, David H./Wagner, Warren L. (2013)
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Vouchers cited: J. Florence, D.H. Lorence & W.L. Wagner 9500 (PAP), D.H. Lorence, L. Dunn, S.P. Perlman, K.R. Wood & J.-Y. Meyer 9023 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1988) (voucher ID: BISH 601874)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1988) (voucher ID: BISH 1000693)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (1988) (voucher ID: PTBG 8517)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (1995) (voucher ID: PTBG 21968)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P. Beauv.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (2003) (voucher ID: PTBG 39296)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Hiva Oa Island introduced
invasive
Lorence, David H./Wagner, Warren L. (2013)
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Hiva Oa Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (2003) (voucher ID: PTBG 39560)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Nuku Hiva (Nukahiva) Island introduced
invasive
Lorence, David H./Wagner, Warren L. (2013)
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Nuku Hiva (Nukahiva) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Voucher cited: J. Florence 6891 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Nuku Hiva (Nukahiva) Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1984) (voucher ID: BISH 554197)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Ua Huka (Huahuna, Uahuka) Island introduced
invasive
Lorence, David H./Wagner, Warren L. (2013)
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Ua Huka (Huahuna, Uahuka) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Voucher cited: S.P. Perlman, K.R. Wood & J.-Y. Meyer 15866 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Huahine Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R. (1997) (p. 102)
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Moorea Island introduced
invasive
Welsh, S. L. (1998) (p. 339)
Vouchers cited: Cartier 143, Cartier 243
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Moorea Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Vouchers cited: C.L. Cartier 143 (PAP), C.L. Cartier 243 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Raiatea (Havai) Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R. (1997) (p. 102)
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island introduced
invasive
Welsh, S. L. (1998) (p. 339)
Voucher cited: Fosberg 61265
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Vouchers cited: J. Florence 3193 (PAP), J. Florence 3276 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1982) (voucher ID: BISH 491721)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1982) (voucher ID: BISH 558030)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1988) (voucher ID: BISH 582489)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (1981) (voucher ID: PTBG 38249)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P. Beauv.
French Polynesia
Tuamotu Archipelago
Niau Atoll introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Voucher cited: J. Florence 10079 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
French Polynesia
Tuamotu Archipelago
Niau Atoll   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1992) (voucher ID: BISH 642460)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Raivavae (Raevavae) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Vouchers cited: J. Florence & W.R. Sykes 11200 (PAP), J. Florence & W.R. Sykes 11408 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Raivavae (Raevavae) Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1992) (voucher ID: BISH 643773)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Raivavae (Raevavae) Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1992) (voucher ID: BISH 644107)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Rurutu Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Voucher cited: J. Florence 5544 (PAP)
Adventice, menace pour la biodiversité.
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
cultivated
Stone, Benjamin C. (1970) (pp. 200-201)
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1987) (p. 49)
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
Meyer, Jean-Yves (2000) (p. 95)
"Potential invader".
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Hawai‘i (Big) Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1562)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaho‘olawe Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1562)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaua‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1562)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Lāna‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1562)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1562)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Moloka‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1562)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1562)
New Caledonia
Îles Loyauté (Loyalte Islands)
Îles Loyauté (Loyalty Islands) introduced
invasive
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 60)
New Caledonia
Îles Loyauté (Loyalte Islands)
Île Tiga introduced
invasive
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 60)
New Caledonia
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Islands introduced
invasive
Meyer, Jean-Yves (2000) (p. 100)
"Fernlands"
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Archipelago
Île Grande Terre introduced
invasive
cultivated
Gargominy, Oliver/Bouchet, Philipe/Pascal, Michel/Jaffre, Tanguy/Tourneu, Jean-Christophe (1996) (p. 381)
Abondante, surtout sur schistes dans le Sud; occupe en peuplements denses monospécifiques de grandes étendues de terrain.
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Archipelago
Île Grande Terre introduced
invasive
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 60)
Voucher cited: MacKee 12716
Niue
Niue
Niue Island introduced
Sykes, W. R. (1970) (pp. 244, 246)
Voucher cited: CHR 168746
Niue
Niue
Niue Island introduced
Whistler, W. A. (1988) (p. 53)
Niue
Niue
Niue Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2000) (p. 5)
Voucher: Flynn 6711 (PTBG, US, NIUE)
Niue
Niue
Niue Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Waterhouse, Barbara M./Newfield, Melanie/Bull, Cate (2004) (p. 12)
Niue
Niue
Niue Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (2000) (voucher ID: PTBG 30202)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora Beauv.
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Babeldaob Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1987) (p. 49)
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Babeldaob Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Lorence, David H./LaRosa, Anne Marie (2009) (p. 16)
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Babeldaob Island   Beleu National Museum (Republic of Palau. Koror.) (1981) (voucher ID: BNM 3075)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora Beauv.
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Babeldaob Island   Beleu National Museum (Republic of Palau. Koror.) (1981) (voucher ID: BNM 3140)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora Beauv.
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea (eastern New Guinea Island)
Papua New Guinea (eastern New Guinea Island) introduced
invasive
Henty, E. E. (1969) (p. 124)
Naturalized in numerous localities; an aggressive colonizer of recently cleared land.
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands   Swarbrick, John T. (1997) (p. 94)
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands introduced
Hancock, I. R./Henderson, C. P. (1988) (p. 90)
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2001) (p. 7)
Rare.
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island   Whistler, W. A. (1992) (p. 100)
Vouchers cited: Soakai 244, Soakai 700
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island introduced
invasive
Yuncker, T. G. (1959) (p. 56)
Uncommon. Voucher cited: Yuncker 16229
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1953) (voucher ID: BISH 125541)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1960) (voucher ID: BISH 125542)
Taxon name on voucher: Melinis minutiflora P.Beauv.
Tonga
Vava‘u Group
Vava‘u Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2001) (p. 7)
Vanuatu
New Hebrides Islands
Vanuatu (Republic of)   Swarbrick, John T. (1997) (p. 94)
Wallis and Futuna
Wallis and Futuna (Horne) Islands
Wallis (‘Uvea) Island introduced
invasive
Orapa, Warea (2005)
Only known to be present on Wallis.
Wallis and Futuna
Wallis and Futuna (Horne) Islands
Wallis (‘Uvea) Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Meyer, Jean-Yves (2007) (pp. 12, 27)
Localement naturalisée en bordure de piste et en zone à toafa près de la station fourragère expérimentale de Hihifo ainsi qu’au sommet du mont Lulu en bordure de route en zone à toafa.
Wallis and Futuna
Wallis and Futuna (Horne) Islands
Wallis (‘Uvea) Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Meyer, Jean-Yves/Jourdan, Hervé/Malau, Atoloto (2008) (p. 9)
Wallis and Futuna
Wallis and Futuna (Horne) Islands
Wallis and Futuna Islands introduced
invasive
Meyer, Jean-Yves (2000) (p. 107)
Fernlands
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)
"Planted for pasture and erosion control."
Naturalised
Australia
Australia (continental)
Queensland introduced
invasive
Queensland Herbarium (2002) (p. 5)
Cambodia
Cambodia
Cambodia (Kingdom of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Chile (continental)
Chile
Chile (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
China
China
China (People's Republic of) introduced
invasive
cultivated
Zhengyi, Wu/Raven, Peter H./Deyuan, Hong (2013)
Introduced into S. China as a fodder grass, locally naturalized. Hong Kong, Yunnan.
China
China
Hong Kong introduced
cultivated
Wu, Te-lin (2001) (p. 340)
Colombia
Colombia
Colombia (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Costa Rica
Costa Rica
Costa Rica (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
El Salvador
El Salvador
El Salvador (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Guatemala
Guatemala
Guatemala (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Honduras
Honduras
Honduras (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Japan
Japan
Japan (country) introduced
Mito, Toshikazu/Uesugi, Tetsuro (2004) (p. 192)
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Nicaragua
Nicaragua
Nicaragua (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Panama
Panama
Panama (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Perú
Perú
Perú (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Taiwan
Taiwan Island
Taiwan Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Zhengyi, Wu/Raven, Peter H./Deyuan, Hong (2013)
Vietnam
Vietnam
Vietnam (Socialist Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Indian Ocean
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Comoros
Comoro Islands
Comoro Islands native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
La Réunion (France)
La Réunion Island
La Réunion Island introduced
invasive
Lavergne, Christophe (2006)
"Envahissant"
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)
USA (Florida) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized

Comments:  Because of its oil content, this grass can be a serious fire hazard. A serious invader in Hawai‘i, French Polynesia and Wallis and Futuna (Wagner et al., 1999, p. 1562; Meyer, 2000, p. 107).

Introduced into Guam, but not widely established (Stone, 1970; p. 200).

Control: 

Chemical: "Sensitive to glyphosate. HAVO staff reported control with foliar application of glyphosate at 1% product in water (Chris Zimmer, HAVO)" (Motooka et al., 2003).


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

  [   PIER species lists  ]   [   PIER home  ]

This page was created on 1 JAN 1999 and was last updated on 21 MAY 2013.