Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Corchorus aestuans
L., Malvaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Other Latin names:  Corchorus acutangulus Lam.

Common name(s): [more details]

Chamorro: bilimbines chaka, tuban chaka

Chinese: tian ma

Habit:  herb

Description:  "Herbs annual, to 1 m tall. Stem red-brown, slightly yellowish puberulent; branches slender. Petiole 0.9-1.6 cm, with yellowish, long, rigid hairs; leaf blade ovate or broadly ovate, 4.5-6.5 x 3-4 cm, sparsely pilose on both surfaces, glabrescent, basal veins 5-7, lateral veins 3-6 pairs, base rounded, margin serrate, basal pair of teeth usually elongating into filiform or caudate appendages, apex shortly acuminate or acute. Flowers solitary or several together in cymes, axillary or leaf-opposed; peduncle and pedicel very short or absent. Sepals 5, purple-red abaxially, narrowly oblong, ca. 5 mm, semi-foveolately boat-shaped distally, apex awned. Petals 5, yellow, nearly as long as sepals, obovate. Stamens many, yellow, ca. 3 mm. Ovary 3-5-loculed, long cylindrical, puberulent; style rodlike; stigma beaklike, 5-toothed. Capsule cylindrical, angled, 3-5-valved, 1.2-2.5 x ca. 0.5 cm, apex 3-5-angled, awns bifurcate. Seeds separated by transverse septum"  (Flora of China online).

"A small herb or suffruticose plant with erect, sparingly branched stems to about 40 cm tall; leaves green, ovate, acute, serrate; flowers 1-3 in clusters, very shortly pedicellate, very small, leaf-opposed; sepals 5; petals 5, yellow, 2-3 mm long; capsule hexagonal-cylindric" (Stone, 1970; pp. 401-402).

Habitat/ecology:  A weed of waste ground (Stone, 1970; pp. 401-402).  In Papua New Guinea, "a plant of roadsides (and little-used roads), waste land, and grazed grassland, often on sandy or gravelly soil"  (Henty & Pritchard, 1975; p. 154).

Propagation:  Seed

Native range:  Paleotropical weed (Stone, 1970; pp. 401-402). Probably neotropics (GRIN).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Federated States of Micronesia
Yap Islands
Fais Island introduced
invasive
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 157)
Federated States of Micronesia
Yap Islands
Fais Island introduced
invasive
Fosberg, F. R./Evans, M. (1969) (p. 9)
Voucher cited: Fosberg 46671 (US)
Federated States of Micronesia
Yap Islands
Ulithi Atoll introduced
invasive
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 157)
Federated States of Micronesia
Yap Islands
Ulithi Atoll   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (1965) (voucher ID: PTBG 24292)
Taxon name on voucher: Corchorus aestuans
Federated States of Micronesia
Yap Islands
Yap (Waqab) Island introduced
invasive
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 157)
French Polynesia
Clipperton Island
Clipperton (Arue, Avera) Island introduced
invasive
Sachet, M.-H. (1962)
French Polynesia
Clipperton Island
Clipperton (Arue, Avera) Island   Sachet, M.-H. (1962) (p. 93)
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island   Fosberg, F. R. (1997) (p. 146)
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island introduced
invasive
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
Naturalisée
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
invasive
Stone, Benjamin C. (1970) (pp. 401-402)
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island introduced
invasive
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 157)
Guam
Guam Island
Guam Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (1982) (voucher ID: PTBG 23844)
Taxon name on voucher: Corchorus aestuans
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Babeldaob Island introduced
invasive
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Oliver, Royce (1979) (p. 157)
Palau
Palau (Belau ) (main island group)
Peleliu (Beliliou) Island   Wagner, W. L./ Herbst, D. R./Weitzman, A./Lorence, D.H. (2013)
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea (eastern New Guinea Island)
Papua New Guinea (eastern New Guinea Island) invasive
Henty, E. E./Pritchard, G. H. (1975) (p. 154)
At low levels, widespread but not common.
Philippines
Philippine Islands
Philippine Islands   Holm, Leroy/Pancho, Juan V./Herberger, James P./Plucknett, Donald L. (1979) (p. 98)
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands
Guadalcanal Island introduced
invasive
Orapa, Warea (2005)
Along roadsides between Honiara and Aruliho area.
Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands
Malaita Island introduced
invasive
Orapa, Warea (2005)
Pacific Rim
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Central America
Central America (Pacific rim)
Guatemala (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Central America
Central America (Pacific rim)
Nicaragua (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
China
China
China (People's Republic of) introduced
cultivated
Zhengyi, Wu/Raven, Peter H./Deyuan, Hong (2013)
Widely cultivated.
China
China
Hong Kong native
Wu, Te-lin (2001) (p. 97)
Indonesia
Indonesia
Indonesia (Republic of)   Holm, Leroy/Pancho, Juan V./Herberger, James P./Plucknett, Donald L. (1979) (p. 98)
Japan
Japan
Japan (country) introduced
Mito, Toshikazu/Uesugi, Tetsuro (2004) (p. 186)
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Singapore
Singapore
Singapore (Republic of) introduced
invasive
Chong, Kwek Yan/Tan, Hugh T. W./Corlett, Richard T. (2009) (p. 28)
Naturalised
South America (Pacific rim)
South America (Pacific rim)
Colombia (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Taiwan
Taiwan Island
Taiwan Island introduced
cultivated
Zhengyi, Wu/Raven, Peter H./Deyuan, Hong (2013)
Widely cultivated.
Thailand
Thailand
Thailand (Kingdom of)   Holm, Leroy/Pancho, Juan V./Herberger, James P./Plucknett, Donald L. (1979) (p. 98)
Indian Ocean
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Australia (Indian Ocean offshore islands)
Christmas Island Group
Christmas Island native
Orchard, Anthony E., ed. (1993) (p. 19)
British Indian Ocean Territory
Chagos Archipelago
Diego Garcia Island introduced
invasive
Whistler, W. Arthur (1996) (p. 30)
British Indian Ocean Territory
Chagos Archipelago
Diego Garcia Island   National Tropical Botanical Garden (U.S.A. Hawaii. Kalaheo.) (1995) (voucher ID: PTBG 38065)
Taxon name on voucher: Corchorus aestuans L.
Seychelles
Seychelles Islands
Agalega Island introduced
Fosberg, F. R./Sachet, Marie-Hélène/Stoddart, D. R. (1983) (p. 138)


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This page was created on 29 NOV 2005 and was last updated on 24 JAN 2013.