Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

  [   PIER species lists  ]   [   PIER home  ]

Sambucus mexicana
Presl ex A.DC., Adoxaceae
Click on an image for links to BIGGER PICTURES


Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Risk assessment results:  High risk, score: 9 (Go to the risk assessment)

Other Latin names:  Sambucus cerulea Raf.; Sambucus glauca Nutt.

Common name(s): [more details]

English: blue elder, blue elderberry, blueberry elder, common elderberry, Mexican elder, Mexican elderberry

Samoan: suni pa‘epa‘e, suni pa‘epa‘e

Spanish: tilo

Habit:  tree

Description:  "Arborescent, at last reaching 10 m high; leaves with 2 to 4 pairs of leaflets plus the terminal leaflet, these narrowly elliptic or elliptic-ovate, serrate, acute-acuminate, up to about 9-10 cm long, the lowest leaflets sometimes themselves compound (often only on the proximal side); petiolules to 1 cm long; corymbs dense, sometimes 24 cm wide; flowers creamy-white; berry purplish-black, 5 mm thick, subglobose, usually 4-seeded"  (Stone, 1970; pp. 567-568).

"The distinctive feature of Hawaiian plants is that the lowermost pair of leaflets is fairly often replaced by 3 sessile leaflets—two smaller side leaflets and a larger middle one.  It is unclear whether plants on the mainland called S. mexicana represent the same species that grows [in Hawai‘i], because the descriptions in regional floras do not match Hawaiian plants called S. mexicana.  Clearly, a thorough revision of Sambucus in the Americas is needed to sort this situation out"  (Staples & Herbst, 2005; p. 222).

"Arbuste à petit arbre de 3 à 10 m de hauteur, reconnaissable à ses feuilles composées de 5 à 7 folioles, à marge dentée, et ses grandes inflorescences (corymbes) atteignant 20 cm de diamètre composées de petites fleurs blanches, et ses fruits, des baies de couleur pourprenoire à maturité"  (Meyer, 2008; p. 38).

Habitat/ecology:  "Elderberry thrives in moist, fertile soils in full sun or partial shade.  Naturalized populations often grow along streams or other wet areas at higher elevations where cooler temperatures prevail.  New shoots emerge from around the base of the plant, and a sizable thicket may form in time"  (Staples & Herbst, 2005; p. 222).  In Hawai‘i, "sparingly naturalized or escaping in cool, mesic to wet areas" (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 495).  Common on Tutuila, American Samoa, in disturbed areas (Space & Flynn, 2000).

Propagation:  Seed, fruits probably eaten by birds.

Native range:  "Texas and California through Mexico and widely planted throughout tropical America"  (Staples & Herbst, 2005; p. 222).

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
Ta‘u Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2000) (p. 6)
American Samoa
Tutuila Islands
Tutuila Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2000) (p. 6)
Chile (offshore islands)
Rapa Nui (Easter) Island
Rapa Nui (Easter) Island (Isla de Pasqua) introduced
cultivated
Meyer, Jean-Yves (2008) (p. 38)
cf. mexicana. "Nous l’avons observée plantée en bordure de route et dans les jardins de Hanga Roa" (Meyer, 2008; p. 38).
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más a Tierra (Robinson Crusoe Island) introduced
invasive
cultivated
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) (p. 557)
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (US)
Northern Mariana Islands
Agrigan (Agrihan) Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 280)
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (US)
Northern Mariana Islands
Agrigan (Agrihan) Island introduced
cultivated
Fosberg, F. R./Falanruw, M. V. C./Sachet, M.-H. (1975) (p. 41)
Voucher cited: Fosberg 31435 (US)
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (US)
Northern Mariana Islands
Pagan Island introduced
Raulerson, L. (2006) (p. 66)
Cook Islands
Southern Cook Islands
Aitutaki Atoll introduced
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 76)
Cook Islands
Southern Cook Islands
‘Atiu Island introduced
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 82)
Cook Islands
Southern Cook Islands
Mangaia Island introduced
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 88)
Cook Islands
Southern Cook Islands
Ma‘uke Island introduced
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 94)
Cook Islands
Southern Cook Islands
Miti‘aro Island introduced
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 99)
Cook Islands
Southern Cook Islands
Rarotonga Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 70)
Ecuador (Galápagos Islands)
Santa Cruz Group
Santa Cruz Island introduced
cultivated
Charles Darwin Foundation (2008)
Federated States of Micronesia
Pohnpei Islands
Pohnpei Island introduced
cultivated
Herrera, Katherine/Lorence, David H./Flynn, Timothy/Balick, Michael J. (2010) (p. 77)
Federated States of Micronesia
Pohnpei Islands
Pohnpei Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (2004) (voucher ID: PTBG 43759)
Taxon name on voucher: Sambucus mexicana
Federated States of Micronesia
Yap Islands
Yap (Waqab) Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 280)
French Polynesia
Gambier Islands
Mangareva (Gambier) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Fatu Hiva Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Hiva Oa Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
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 Huka (Huahuna, Uahuka) Island introduced
cultivated
Lorence, David H./Wagner, Warren L. (2013)
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Ua Huka (Huahuna, Uahuka) Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (2004) (voucher ID: PTBG 42233)
Taxon name on voucher: Sambucus mexicana C. Presl ex DC.
French Polynesia
Marquesas Islands
Ua Pou (Huapu, Uapou, Uapu) Island introduced
cultivated
Lorence, David H./Wagner, Warren L. (2013)
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Raiatea (Havai) Island introduced
cultivated
Welsh, S. L. (1998) (p. 60)
Voucher cited: BRY 26100a
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island introduced
cultivated
Welsh, S. L. (1998) (p. 60)
Voucher cited: Florence 2442
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Voucher cited: Florence 2442 (PAP)
Naturalisée
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1982) (voucher ID: BISH 493029)
Taxon name on voucher: Sambucus mexicana Presl ex A.DC.
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Raivavae (Raevavae) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Rapa Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Rimatara (Rimitara) Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Rurutu Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
cultivated
Stone, Benjamin C. (1970) (pp. 567-568)
Vouchers cited: Stone 5065 (GUAM), Stone 5161 (GUAM)
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 280)
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island   Bishop Museum (Honolulu) (1946) (voucher ID: BISH 135649)
Taxon name on voucher: Sambucus mexicana Presl ex A.DC.
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Hawai‘i (Big) Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 495-496)
Sparingly naturalized.
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaua‘i Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 495-496)
Sparingly naturalized.
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 495-496)
East Maui
Sparingly naturalized.
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Oppenheimer, Hank L./Bartlett, Randal T. (2002) (p. 5)
West Maui. Voucher cited: Oppenheimer et al. H40006 (BISH)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 495-496)
Voucher cited: Cooper s.n. (BISH)
Sparingly naturalized.
Marshall Islands
Ratak Chain
Majuro (Mãjro) Atoll introduced
cultivated
Vander Velde, Nancy (2003) (p. 81)
Rare, possibly extirpated.
Niue
Niue
Niue Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2000) (p. 25)
Niue
Niue
Niue Island introduced
cultivated
Space, James C./Waterhouse, Barbara M./Newfield, Melanie/Bull, Cate (2004) (p. 46)
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Koror (Oreor) Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 280)
Samoa
Western Samoa Islands
Savai‘i Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 71)
Samoa
Western Samoa Islands
Upolu Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2002) (p. 68)
Tonga
Ha‘apai Group
Lifuka and Foa Islands introduced
invasive
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2001) (p. 74)
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
‘Eua Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2001) (p. 62)
Tonga
Tongatapu Group
Tongatapu Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2001) (p. 56)
Tonga
Vava‘u Group
Vava‘u Island introduced
invasive
Space, James C./Flynn, Tim (2001) (p. 68)
Pacific Rim
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Chile (continental)
Chile
Chile (Republic of)   Holm, Leroy/Pancho, Juan V./Herberger, James P./Plucknett, Donald L. (1979) (p. 321)
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (California) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)

Comments:  Fairly common on Tutuila, American Samoa, both as an ornamental and naturalized (Space & Flynn, 2000). Mostly seen as an ornamental on Niue (Space & Flynn, 2000). Common on the various islands of Tonga (Space & Flynn, 2001) and in Samoa (Space & Flynn, 2002), both cultivated and naturalized.


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 24 APR 2010.