Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Plectranthus amboinicus
(Lour.) Spreng., Lamiaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Other Latin names:  Coleus amboinicus Lour.; Salvia officinalis sensu J. W. Parham in Dept. Agr. Fiji Bull. 35

Common name(s): [more details]

English: country borage, Cuban oregano, french thyme, Indian borage, Indian mint, Mexican mint, Mexican oregano, soup mint, Spanish thyme

Fijian: rhaivoki, sage

French: oreille, ti baume

Niuean: pasiole

Samoan: militini, militini

Spanish: orégano

Tongan: kaloni, pasiole

Habit:  herb

Description:  "Sprawling and somewhat succulent herb to 1 m high, sometimes subligneous and prostrate at base, the branchlets ascending, densely spreading-hirsute; leaves petiolate, the petioles 1-4.5 cm long, densely pubescent, the blades fleshy, broadly ovate to suborbicular, rhombic, or reniform, 4-10 x 3-9 cm, rounded to truncate and then often long-attenuate at base, obtuse to rounded at apex, coarsely crenate to dentate at margin or entire toward base, densely appressed-pubescent above and beneath; vericils 10-20 (or more)-flowered, subglobose, arranged in terminal, spicate, densely pubescent inflorescences 10-20 cm long, the bracts 3-4 mm long, the pedicels slender, hirsute, to 5 mm long; calyx campanulate, 1.5-4 mm long, hirsute and glandular, the upper lip erect, broadly ovate-oblong, the other teeth narrow, acute; corolla pale blue or mauve to pink, 8-12 mm long, the tube declinate, 3-4 mm long, expanding distally, pubescent without, the upper lip to 4.5 x 3 mm, erect, puberulent, the lower lip to 5-6 x 4 mm, concave; filaments of stamens mostly fused into a tube around style; nutlets smooth, pale brown, about 0.7 x 0.5 mm"  (Smith, 1991; pp. 226-227).

Habitat/ecology:  In Fiji, "from near sea level to about 250 m, cultivated and naturalized in rocky and sandy areas in woods and thickets" (Smith, 1991; pp. 226-227). In Tonga, "frequent as a waste-area and roadside weed" (Yuncker, 1959; p. 235).

Propagation:  Seed, rooting of stems.

Native range:  Not known but possibly southern tropical Africa, now widely cultivated (Smith, 1991; pp. 226-227).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
American Samoa
Manu‘a Islands
Olosega Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1976) (voucher ID: BISH 430298)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Federated States of Micronesia
Kosrae Island
Kosrae Island introduced
cultivated
Lorence, David H./Flynn, Timothy (2010) (p. 18)
Variegated leaf cultivar.
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Taveuni Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1991) (pp. 226-227)
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Vanua Levu Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1991) (pp. 226-227)
Vouchers cited: DA 16890, DA 11524
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Vanua Levu Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1969) (voucher ID: BISH 34000)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Vanua Levu Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1958) (voucher ID: BISH 34003)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Vanua Levu Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1958) (voucher ID: BISH 698394)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Viti Levu Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1991) (pp. 226-227)
Vouchers cited: Greenwood 734, DA 16757
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Yasawas Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Smith, Albert C. (1991) (pp. 226-227)
Voucher cited: St. John 18080
Fiji
Fiji Islands
Yasawas Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1937) (voucher ID: BISH 150529)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Nuku Hiva (Nukahiva) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Ua Pou (Huapu, Uapou, Uapu) Island introduced
invasive
Lorence, David H./Wagner, Warren L. (2013)
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Ua Pou (Huapu, Uapou, Uapu) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Voucher cited: L. Dunn 329 (PAP)
Naturalized off the side off the road.
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
Marshall Islands
Ratak Chain
Majuro (Mãjro) Atoll introduced
cultivated
Vander Velde, Nancy (2003) (p. 101)
Nauru
Nauru Island
Nauru Island introduced
cultivated
Thaman, R. R./Fosberg, F. R./Manner, H. I./Hassall, D. C. (1994) (pp. 156-157)
Voucher cited: Hassall 211 (SUVA)
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Archipelago
Île Grande Terre introduced
cultivated
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 69)
Voucher cited: MacKee 20950
Niue
Niue
Niue Island introduced
cultivated
Sykes, W. R. (1970) (p. 102)
Uncommon. Vouchers cited: CHR 169917, CHR 169918, CHR 169919
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Koror (Oreor) Island introduced
cultivated
Space, James C./Waterhouse, Barbara/Miles, Joel E./Tiobech, Joseph/Rengulbai, Kashgar (2003) (p. 82)
Philippines
Philippine Islands
Philippine Islands introduced
cultivated
Merrill, Elmer D. (1923) (p. 418)
Cultivated here and there for its aromatic leaves.
Samoa
Western Samoa Islands
Savai‘i Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 70)
Samoa
Western Samoa Islands
Savai‘i Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1931) (voucher ID: BISH 150539)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Samoa
Western Samoa Islands
Savai‘i Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1929) (voucher ID: BISH 150540)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands introduced
invasive
cultivated
Hancock, I. R./Henderson, C. P. (1988) (p. 59)
Tonga
Ha‘apai Group
Lifuka Island   Yuncker, T. G. (1959) (p. 235)
Voucher cited: Yuncker 15797
Tonga
Ha‘apai Group
Lifuka Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1953) (voucher ID: BISH 150541)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Tonga
Ha‘apai Group
Nomuka Island   Yuncker, T. G. (1959) (p. 235)
Voucher cited: Yuncker 15861
Tonga
Ha‘apai Group
Nomuka Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1953) (voucher ID: BISH 150542)
Taxon name on voucher: Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng.
Tonga
Tonga Islands
Tonga Islands   Yuncker, T. G. (1959) (p. 235)
"Frequent throughout Tonga".
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2001) (p. 55)
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island   Yuncker, T. G. (1959) (p. 235)
Vouchers cited: Setchell & Parks 15414, Yuncker 15232
United States (other Pacific offshore islands)
Midway Atoll
Sand Island introduced
cultivated
Starr, Forest/Starr, Kim/Loope, Lloyd (2008) (pp. B-12)
Wallis and Futuna
Wallis and Futuna (Horne) Islands
Futuna Island introduced
cultivated
Morat, Ph./Veillon, J.-M. (1985)
Morat & Veillon, 1985, cited in Meyer, 2007
Indian Ocean
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
La Réunion (France)
La Réunion Island
La Réunion Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Lavergne, Christophe (2006)
"Cultivé/±envahissant"

Comments:  Invasive in the Virgin Islands where it forms dense carpets in shaded dry forest. (Fred Kraus, communication to Aliens listserver)


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This page was created on 1 JAN 1999 and was last updated on 21 OCT 2006.