Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Solanum elaeagnifolium
Cav., Solanaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Common name(s): [more details]

English: bull nettle, prairie berry, silver leaf nightshade, silver-leaf bitter-apple, silverleaf nettle, tomato weed, white horse-nettle, white nightshade

Spanish: trompillo

Habit:  herb

Description:  "Perennial herbs up to 50 cm tall, vegetative growth usually annual, erect, branched above, usually armed with straight, fine, reddish prickles 2-5 mm long, usually on stems, occasionally on petioles, leaves, and calyx, all parts densely and closely tomentose with stellate hairs, general aspect silvery green, rarely reddish brown, forming colonies from underground root system.  Leaves simple, alternate, lower leaves oblong-lanceolate, up to 10 cm long and 4 cm wide, margins sinuate-undulate, apex acute or obtuse, base rounded or cuneate, upper leaves smaller, oblong, entire.  Flowers perfect, actinomorphic, few in racemose cymes, peduncle up to 1 cm long, pedicels ca. 1 cm long at anthesis, elongating to 2-3 cm long in fruit; calyx tube up to 5 mm long, 5-ribbed by the principle veins, the lobes subulate; corolla blue, rotate-stellate, 2-3 cm in diameter, the lobes divided ca. 1/2 their length; stamens inserted near base of corolla tube; filaments 3-4 mm long; anthers yellow, slender, tapered upward, conspicuous, erect, not coherent, 5-8 mm long, opening by apical pores; ovary pubescent toward summit; style 10-15 mm long; stigma terminal.  Berries at first marbled green, later yellow to finally orangish brown, mucilaginous, globose, 0.8-1.4 cm in diameter, calyx covering base of fruit.  Seeds pale brown, discoid, flattened, ca. 3 mm long, smooth. Considerable variation within this species exists in prickliness, leaf margin, tomentum, and flower color"  (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 1270).

Habitat/ecology:  In Hawai‘i, "naturalized in disturbed agricultural sites" (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 1270).

Propagation:  Seed and forming colonies from roots (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 1270).

Native range:  "Extra-tropical North and South America, now widely naturalized and a tenacious weed" (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 1270).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1270)
East Maui.
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Oppenheimer, Hank L./Meidell, J. Scott/Bartlett, R. T. (1999) (p. 10)
West Maui. Voucher cited: Oppenheimer & Price H79801 (BISH)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Moloka‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1270)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 1270)
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) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Japan
Japan
Japan (country) introduced
Mito, Toshikazu/Uesugi, Tetsuro (2004) (p. 188)
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)

Control:  Fact sheet, including control methods, from Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board.


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

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This page was created on 29 DEC 2005 and was last updated on 10 MAY 2017.