Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Oxalis debilis
Kunth, Oxalidaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Other Latin names:  Oxalis corymbosa DC.

Common name(s): [more details]

English: lilac oxalis, pink wood sorrel

French: oseille, trèfle

Hawaiian: ‘ihi pehu

Habit:  herb

Description:  "Acaulescent perennial herbs from an ovoid bulb 2-2.5 cm long, covered with brownish ovate scales, maturing into masses of brown ovoid bulbils 3-6 mm in diameter in the axils of the old scales.  Leaves trifoliolate, leaflets broadly obcordate, often drooping, 1.5-4.5 cm long, 2-6.5 cm wide, glabrous or sparsely pubescent, both surfaces covered with minute reddish tubercles, petioles slender, flexuous, ascending, 10-25 cm long, more or less villous, stipules small, membranous, adnate to petioles.  Flowers 2-12 in umbellate cymes, peduncles up to 35 cm long, usually villous, bracts several, ovate-lanceolate, 2.5-3 mm long; sepals oblong, 3.5-5 (-6) mm long; petals pinkish purple, spatulate, 11-20 mm long, apex obtuse to truncate; ovules 3-8 per cell, in 1-2 rows" (Wagner et al., 1999; pp. 1002, 1004, 1887).

Habitat/ecology:  In Hawai‘i, "naturalized and sometimes locally common, usually in relatively wet, shaded sites, 10-850 m" (Wagner et al., 1999; pp. 1002, 1004).  In Fiji, "occasionally cultivated and frequently naturalized in gardens, waste places, and along trails near sea level" (Smith, 1985; p. 109).  In the Pacific, "an occasional garden ornamental, now escaped and becoming a weed of waste places and cultivated land, difficult to eradicate" (Smith, 1985; p. 627). In New Caledonia, "mauvaise herbe répandue mais pas très gênante" (MacKee, 1994; p. 109). Moist uplands in the Galápagos Islands (McMullen, 1999; p. 226).

Propagation:  Bulbils.

Native range:  Tropical South America (Smith, 1985; p. 627).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Australia (Pacific offshore islands)
Lord Howe Island
Lord Howe Island introduced
invasive
Orchard, Anthony E., ed. (1994) (p. 20)
"A native of South America now widespread as a weed of disturbed ground throughout temperate and warm temperate regions". Vouchers cited: J. Pickard 2676 (NSW), J. Pickard 1214 (NSW), A.C. Beauglehole 5780 (MEL)
Australia (Pacific offshore islands)
Norfolk Islands
Norfolk Island introduced
invasive
Orchard, Anthony E., ed. (1994) (p. 10)
"A native of South America now widespread as a weed of disturbed ground throughout temperate and warm temperate regions". Vouchers cited: P.S. Green 1364 (A); R.M. Laing (CHR); 1939, J.D. McComish (NSW)
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más a Tierra (Robinson Crusoe Island) introduced
invasive
Atkinson, Rachel/Sawyer, John (2011)
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. 491, 537, 556)
Voucher cited: Danton H(1574)1336. "Plantada en los jardines y para el florecimiento del pueblo de San Juan Bautista, se naturaliza fácilmente y se extiende por todas partes".
Cook Islands
Southern Cook Islands
Mangaia Island   McCormack, Gerald (2013)
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
Floreana Group
Floreana Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
var. corymbosa. As Oxalis corymbosa.
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
Isabela Group
Isabela Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
var. corymbosa. As Oxalis corymbosa.
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
Isabela Group
Volcán Cerro Azul, Isabela Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
var. corymbosa. As Oxalis corymbosa.
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
Isabela Group
Volcán Sierra Negra, Isabela Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
var. corymbosa. As Oxalis corymbosa.
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
San Cristóbal Group
San Cristóbal Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
var. corymbosa. As Oxalis corymbosa.
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
Santa Cruz Group
Santa Cruz Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
var. corymbosa. As Oxalis corymbosa.
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Viti Levu Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1985) (p. 627)
Vouchers cited: Greenwood 803, DA 5605, DA 11742, DA 11229, DA 11540, DA 13275
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
var. corymbosa (A.P. de Candolle) A. Lourteig. Voucher cited: J. Florence 4484 (PAP)
Naturalisée
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Hawai‘i (Big) Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1002, 1004, 1887)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaua‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1002, 1004, 1887)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Lāna‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1002, 1004, 1887)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1002, 1004, 1887)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Moloka‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1002, 1004, 1887)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1002, 1004, 1887)
Voucher cited: Mann & Brigham 37 (BISH)
Japan (offshore islands)
Ogasawara (Bonin) Islands
Bonin (Ogasawara) Islands introduced
invasive
Toyoda, Takeshi (2003) (p. 287)
As Oxalis corymbosa DC.
Naturalized
Japan (offshore islands)
Ogasawara (Bonin) Islands
Bonin (Ogasawara) Islands introduced
Kato, Hidetoshi (2007)
Subsp. corymbosa (DC.) Lourteig
New Caledonia
Îles Bélep (Belep Islands)
Île Art introduced
invasive
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 109)
Voucher cited: MacKee 19456
New Caledonia
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Islands introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1985) (p. 627)
New Caledonia
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Islands introduced
invasive
Gargominy, Oliver/Bouchet, Philipe/Pascal, Michel/Jaffre, Tanguy/Tourneu, Jean-Christophe (1996) (p. 382)
Mauvaise herbe répandue.
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Archipelago
Île Grande Terre introduced
invasive
Tassin, Jacques (2005)
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Archipelago
Île Grande Terre introduced
invasive
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 109)
Vouchers cited: Buchholz 1316, Guillaumin 8463, MacKee 5565, MacKee 11994, MacKee 12878, MacKee 40971
Samoa
Western Samoa Islands
Western Samoa Islands introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1985) (p. 627)
United States (other Pacific offshore islands)
Midway Atoll
Sand Island introduced
invasive
Starr, Forest/Starr, Kim/Loope, Lloyd (2008) (pp. B-11)
var. corymbosa. Voucher cited: Starr & Starr 080601-04
United States (other Pacific offshore islands)
Midway Atoll
Sand Island introduced
invasive
Starr, Forest/Starr, Kim/Loope, Lloyd L. (2010) (pp. 65-66)
Voucher cited: Starr & Starr 080601-04 (BISH)
Vanuatu
New Hebrides Islands
Vanuatu (Republic of)   Swarbrick, John T. (1997) (p. 95)
Pacific Rim
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Colombia
Colombia
Colombia (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Ecuador (Mainland)
Ecuador
Ecuador (Republic of) (continental) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Indonesia
Indonesia
Indonesia (Republic of) introduced
invasive
Waterhouse, D. F. (1993) (pp. 67, 78)
Japan
Japan
Japan (country) introduced
Mito, Toshikazu/Uesugi, Tetsuro (2004) (p. 185)
As Oxalis corymbosa DC.
Malaysia
Malaysia
Malaysia (country of) introduced
invasive
Waterhouse, D. F. (1993) (pp. 67, 78)
New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand (country) introduced
invasive
Webb, C. J./Sykes, W. R./Garnock-Jones, P. J. (1988) (p. 918)
"Primarily a weed of cultivated soil, and waste, usually open, disturbed ground".
Perú
Perú
Perú (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Singapore
Singapore
Singapore (Republic of) introduced
invasive
Waterhouse, D. F. (1993) (pp. 67, 78)
Singapore
Singapore
Singapore (Republic of) introduced
invasive
Chong, Kwek Yan/Tan, Hugh T. W./Corlett, Richard T. (2009) (p. 65)
var. corymbosa (DC.) Lourteig, naturalised
Thailand
Thailand
Thailand (Kingdom of) introduced
invasive
Waterhouse, D. F. (1993) (pp. 67, 78)
Indian Ocean
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Mauritius
Mautitius Islands (Mauritius and Rodrigues)
Mauritius Island   Holm, Leroy/Pancho, Juan V./Herberger, James P./Plucknett, Donald L. (1979) (p. 259)

Additional information:
Additional online information about Oxalis debilis is available from the Hawaiian Ecosystems at Risk project (HEAR).

Information about Oxalis debilis as a weed (worldwide references) may be available from the Global Compendium of Weeds (GCW).

Taxonomic information about Oxalis debilis may be available from the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN).

References:

Atkinson, Rachel/Sawyer, John. 2011. Naturalized species in the Juan Fernández Archipelago, Chile. Unpublished spreadsheet.

Charles Darwin Foundation. 2008. Database inventory of introduced plant species in the rural and urban zones of Galapagos. Charles Darwin Foundation, Galapagos, Ecuador.

Charles Darwin Research Station. 2005. CDRS Herbarium records.

Chong, Kwek Yan/Tan, Hugh T. W./Corlett, Richard T. 2009. A checklist of the total vascular plant flora of Singapore: native, naturalised and cultivated species. Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, National University of Singapore. 273 pp.

Danton, Philippe/Perrier, Christophe/Martinez Reyes, Guido. 2006. Nouveau catalogue de la flore vaculaire de l'archipel Juan Fernández (Chile) [Nuevo catálogo de la flora vacular del Archipélago Juan Fernández (Chile)]. Acta Bot. Gallica 153(4):399-587.

Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. 2013. Base de données botaniques Nadeaud de l'Herbier de la Polynésie Française (PAP). (online resource).

Gargominy, Oliver/Bouchet, Philipe/Pascal, Michel/Jaffre, Tanguy/Tourneu, Jean-Christophe. 1996. Conséquences des introductions d'espèces animales et végétales sur la biodiversité en Nouvelle-Calédonie. Rev. Ecol. (Terre Vie) 51:375-401.

Holm, Leroy/Pancho, Juan V./Herberger, James P./Plucknett, Donald L. 1979. A geographical atlas of world weeds. John Wiley & Sons, New York. 391 pp.

Kato, Hidetoshi. 2007. Herbarium records of Makino Herbarium, Tokyo Metropolitan University. Personal communication.

MacKee, H. S. 1994. Catalogue des plantes introduites et cultivées en Nouvelle-Calédonie. Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris, 164 p.

McCormack, Gerald. 2013. Cook Islands Biodiversity Database, Version 2007.2. Cook Islands Natural Heritage Trust, Rarotonga.

McIntyre, Guy. 1991. Weeds of sugar cane in Mauritius, their description and control. Mauritius Sugar Industry Reseach Institute. 151 pp.

McMullen, C. K. 1999. Flowering plants of the Galápagos. Comstock Pub. Assoc., Ithaca, N.Y. 370 p.

Mito, Toshikazu/Uesugi, Tetsuro. 2004. Invasive alien species in Japan: the status quo and the new regulation for prevention of their adverse effects. Global Environmental Research 8(2)/2004: 171-191.

Orchard, Anthony E., ed. 1994. Flora of Australia. Vol. 49, Oceanic islands 1. Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra.

Smith, Albert C. 1985. Flora Vitiensis nova: a new flora of Fiji. National Tropical Botanical Garden, Lawai, Kauai, Hawaii. Volume 3. 758 pp.

Starr, Forest/Starr, Kim/Loope, Lloyd. 2008. Botanical survey of Midway Atoll. Prepared for: United States Fish and Wildlife Service. 27 pp. plus appendices.

Starr, Forest/Starr, Kim/Loope, Lloyd L. 2010. New plant records from the Hawaiian Archipelago. In: Evenhuis, Neal L. and Eldredge, Lucias G., eds. Records of the Hawaii Biological Survey for 2008. Bishop Museum Occasional Papers 107:61-68.

Swarbrick, John T. 1997. Weeds of the Pacific Islands. Technical paper no. 209. South Pacific Commission, Noumea, New Caledonia. 124 pp.

Tassin, Jacques. 2005. Jacques Tassin (IAC-CIRAD), personal communication.

Toyoda, Takeshi. 2003. Flora of the Bonin Islands. Aboc & Co. 522 pp.

U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. 2013. National Genetic Resources Program. Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Online searchable database.

Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. 1999. Manual of the flowering plants of Hawaii. Revised edition. Bernice P. Bishop Museum special publication. University of Hawai‘i Press/Bishop Museum Press, Honolulu. 1919 pp. (two volumes).

Waterhouse, D. F. 1993. The major arthropod pests and weeds of agriculture in Southeast Asia. The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, Canberra. 141 pp.

Webb, C. J./Sykes, W. R./Garnock-Jones, P. J. 1988. Flora of New Zealand, Volume IV: Naturalised pteridophytes, gymnosperms, dicotyledons. Botany Division, DSIR, Christchurch. 1365 pp.

Wiggins, I. L./Porter, D. M. 1971. Flora of the Galapágos Islands. Stanford University Press. 998 pp.


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

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This page was created on 5 AUG 2002 and was last updated on 20 OCT 2006.