Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Chenopodium album
L., Chenopodiaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Common name(s): [more details]

Chamorro: kiletes, kilites

Chinese: li

English: Antigua hay grass, fat hen, giant fat-hen, goosefoot, lamb's quarters, Nandi blue grass, Nawai grass, pigweed, silver grass, white goosefoot

Fijian: marvel lahan, marvel mothi

French: ansérine blanche, chénopode blanc, farineuse

Japanese: akaza, iwa-akaza, shiroza, yamā-akaza

Spanish: armuelle, campo, cenizo, cenizo blanco, chual, quinqua del quinquilla, salado

Habit:  herb

Description:  "Annual herbs; stems erect, 5-10 (-15) dm long, with a unusually stout central stem and ascending lateral branches, mealy pubescent or glabrate.  Leaves variable, often rhombic-ovate to lanceolate, more than 1.5 ties longer than wide, 3-6 cm long, 2-3 (-4) cm wide, moderately to densely mealy, margins irregularly sinuate-dentate to entire, apex acute to obtuse, base narrowly to broadly cuneate, petioles ca. 0.5-4 cm long.  Flowers in dense glomerules grouped into dense, nearly leafless, paniculate spikes; calyx ca. 1 mm long, completely enclosing the fruit at maturity, the lobes ovate, weakly or not keeled, mealy pubescent, margins scarious.  Seed horizontal, 1.1-1.5 mm in diameter, margins obtuse, pericarp lightly roughened, not alveolate, usually attached to the seed"  (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 537).

Habitat/ecology:  "Chenopodium album...is one of the most widely distributed species of weeds in the world and is one of the most successful colonizers as it moves into new areas.  It thrives on all soil types and over a wide range of pH values.  Being a colonizing species it occurs on habitats that have been opened up by disturbances"  (Holm et al., 1977; pp. 84-91).  Better adapted to temperate zones, Chenopodium album is a secondary weed in the tropics (Holm et al., 1977; pp. 84-91).

In Hawai‘i, "sparingly naturalized in the Kula area, Maui" (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 537). Sparingly naturalized in Guam (Stone, 1970; p. 266). In New Caledonia, "mauvaise herbe peu commune" (MacKee, 1994; p. 29).  In Papua New Guinea, "a nitrophilous and usually gregarious weed of cultivation; reported from Papuasia as germinating among carrot seed and probably not persisting, at least at lower altitudes"  (Henty, 1981; p. 21).

Propagation:  Seed.  "Large plants have produced 500,000 seeds.  There is no special system of seed dispersal so that most of the seeds drop to the ground.  They are not buoyant, but surface water may wash them into ditches where they can be moved long distances.  They also travel in dung and droppings of animals and birds.  Seeds have been know to survive from 30 to 40 years in soil" (Holm et al., 1977; p. 86).

Native range:  "Probably of European origin" (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 537). Europe, western Asia and north Africa; exact native range obscure. Also cultivated (GRIN).

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)
Norfolk Islands
Norfolk Island introduced
invasive
Orchard, Anthony E., ed. (1994) (p. 8)
"A weed of disturbed soils, recorded only recently and possibly a relatively new arrival". Vouchers cited: W.R. Sykes NI 498 (CHR), W.R. Sykes NI 833 (CHR)
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más a Tierra (Robinson Crusoe Island) introduced
invasive
Cuevas, Jaime G./Marticorena, Alicia/Cavieres, Lohengrin A. (2004) (p. 535)
Voucher cited: JF 73
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
Danton, Philippe/Perrier, Christophe/Martinez Reyes, Guido (2006) (pp. 460, 464, 552)
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Santa Clara introduced
invasive
Atkinson, Rachel/Sawyer, John (2011)
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Santa Clara introduced
invasive
Danton, Philippe/Perrier, Christophe/Martinez Reyes, Guido (2006) (pp. 460, 464, 552)
Voucher cited: Danton B(441)398
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
invasive
Stone, Benjamin C. (1970) (p. 266)
Sparingly naturalized.
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
invasive
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 67)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Hawai‘i (Big) Island introduced
invasive
Staples, George W./Imada, Clyde T./Herbst, Derral R. (2002) (p. 7)
Vouchers cited: C. Imada & M. Legrande 2000-21 (BISH), E. Funk s.n. (BISH 662898)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (p. 537)
Kula area, Maui
Sparingly naturalized.
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Oppenheimer, Hank L. (2003) (p. 9)
West Maui. Voucher cited: Oppenheimer H60156 (BISH, PTBG)
Japan (offshore islands)
Ogasawara (Bonin) Islands
Bonin (Ogasawara) Islands introduced
Kato, Hidetoshi (2007)
New Caledonia
New Caledonia Archipelago
Île Grande Terre introduced
invasive
MacKee, H. S. (1994) (p. 29)
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea (eastern New Guinea Island)
Papua New Guinea (eastern New Guinea Island) introduced
invasive
Henty, E. E., ed. (1981) (pp. 20-21)
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)
Australia (continental) introduced
invasive
National Herbarium of New South Wales (2013)
South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia
Australia
Australia (continental)
New South Wales introduced
invasive
National Herbarium of New South Wales (2013)
Australia
Australia (continental)
Northern Territory introduced
invasive
National Herbarium of New South Wales (2013)
Australia
Australia (continental)
Queensland introduced
invasive
National Herbarium of New South Wales (2013)
Canada (British Colombia)
Province of British Columbia
Canada (British Columbia) 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) uncertain if native
invasive
Zhengyi, Wu/Raven, Peter H./Deyuan, Hong (2013)
"Fields, waste places, roadsides; a difficult weed to control".
China
China
China (People's Republic of)   Holm, Leroy/Pancho, Juan V./Herberger, James P./Plucknett, Donald L. (1979) (p. 81)
China
China
Hong Kong native
Wu, Te-lin (2001) (p. 76)
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
Ecuador (Mainland)
Ecuador
Ecuador (Republic of) (continental) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Indonesia
Indonesia
Indonesia (Republic of)   Holm, Leroy G./Plucknett, D. L./Pancho, J. V./Herberger, J. P. (1977) (pp. 87-91)
Japan
Japan
Japan (country) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Japan
Japan
Japan (country) introduced
Mito, Toshikazu/Uesugi, Tetsuro (2004) (p. 182)
North Korea
North Korea
North Korea (Democratic People's Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
South Korea
South Korea
South Korea (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand (country) introduced
invasive
Webb, C. J./Sykes, W. R./Garnock-Jones, P. J. (1988) (p. 524)
"Modified habitats, particularly common in disturbed and open ground, also sandy coastal and inland areas to c. 1000 m".
Perú
Perú
Perú (Republic of) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Taiwan
Taiwan Island
Taiwan Island introduced
invasive
Zhengyi, Wu/Raven, Peter H./Deyuan, Hong (2013)
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (Oregon) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (California) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (Washington) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
Also reported from
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Canada (except British Colombia)
Canada
Canada (country) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
United States (continental except west coast)
United States (other states)
United States (other states) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized
United States (continental except west coast)
United States (other states)
USA (Florida) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Naturalized

Control: 

Physical:  "The species is unable to withstand clipping, and cutting plants during early stages of growth will provide good control".

Chemical:  "An effective herbicide is MCPA"  (Weber, 2003; p. 102).

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

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

Taxonomic information about Chenopodium album 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.

Australian National Botanic Gardens. 2013. Australian plant common name database. Online resource.

Cuevas, Jaime G./Marticorena, Alicia/Cavieres, Lohengrin A. 2004. New additions to the introduced flora of the Juan Fernández Islands: origin, distribution, life history traits, and potential of invasion. Revista Chilene de Histora Natural 77:523-538.

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.

Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce. 1979. A geographical checklist of the Micronesian dicotyledonae. Micronesica 15:1-295.

Henty, E. E., ed. 1981. Handbooks of the flora of Papua New Guinea, vol. 2. Melbourne University Press, Melbourne. 276 pp.

Holm, Leroy G./Plucknett, D. L./Pancho, J. V./Herberger, J. P. 1977. The world’s worst weeds: distribution and biology. East-West Center/University Press of Hawaii. 609 pp.

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.

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.

National Herbarium of New South Wales. 2013. PlantNet: New South Wales Flora online. The Plant Information Network System of the Botanic Gardens Trust Version 2.0. Online resource.

Oppenheimer, Hank L. 2003. New plant records from Maui and Hawai‘i Counties. In: Evenhuis, Neal L. and Eldredge, Lucius G., eds. Records of the Hawaii Biological Survey for 2001-2002. Part 1: Articles. Bishop Museum Occasional Papers. 73:3-30.

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

Smith, Albert C. 1979. Flora Vitiensis nova: a new flora of Fiji. National Tropical Botanical Garden, Lawai, Kauai, Hawaii. Volume 1. 494 pp.

Staples, George W./Imada, Clyde T./Herbst, Derral R. 2002. New Hawaiian plant records for 2000. In: Evenhuis, Neal L. and Eldredge, Lucius G., eds. Records of the Hawaii Biological Survey for 2000. Part 1: Articles. Bishop Museum Occasional Papers. 68:3-18.

Stone, Benjamin C. 1970. The flora of Guam. Micronesica 6:1-659.

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).

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.

Weber, Ewald. 2003. Invasive plants of the World. CABI Publishing, CAB International, Wallingford, UK. 548 pp.

Wu, Te-lin. 2001. Check List of Hong Kong Plants. Hong Kong Herbarium and the South China Institute of Botany. Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department Bulletin 1 (revised). 384 pp.

Zhengyi, Wu/Raven, Peter H./Deyuan, Hong. 2013. Flora of China (online resource).


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

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This page was created on 21 NOV 2005 and was last updated on 10 MAR 2013.