Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Prunus cerasifera
Ehrhart, Rosaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  no

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Risk assessment results:  High risk, score: 8 (Go to the risk assessment)

Common name(s): [more details]

Chinese: ying tao li

English: cherry plum, myrobalan plum

French: bacarinier, cerisette, mirobolan, prunier cerise

Spanish: arañón, ciruela chabacana, ciruelo mirobalan, guindo, mirobolán

Habit:  shrub/tree

Description:  "Deciduous shrub or small tree up to 8 m high when mature, with numerous spiny branches mainly on lower vegetative shoots; trunk short; secondary branches ± erect. Leaf petiole 6-12-(20) mm long, glabrous; blade thin, narrowly obovate to elliptic or broadly elliptic, (30)-40-80 x (13)-15-45 mm, usually green, sometimes purple or bronzy purple, ± shining, subacute to apiculate, cuneate at base, glabrous above, glabrous below but lower 1/3 of midrib sometimes densely pilose (lamina of young leaves sometimes ± pilose below), serrulate with teeth blunt or with a short cusp; stipules short, triangular, deciduous. Flowers solitary although usually closely spaced, or in clusters of 2-(4) on short shoots, not fragrant, pendent or spreading; pedicels 5-14-(25) mm long, glabrous. Hypanthium broad; sepals oblong, 1.5-3 mm long, obtuse, glabrous except on inner face, becoming reflexed, mostly green but sometimes purplish, with marginal stalked glands. Petals usually 5, spreading, orbicular, 6-11 mm in diameter, rounded and undulate, white or occasionally pink. Stamens slightly < or = petals; filaments pale. Fruit (10)-15-30 mm long, usually subglobose or ± broadly ovoid, sometimes globose, somewhat sulcate, glabrous, yellow to orange-red or scarlet, sometimes dark crimson, slightly pruinose, sweet; stone smooth"  (Webb et al., 1988; p. 1093).

Habitat/ecology:  "Grassland, riparian habitats, forest edges, coastal scrub and dunes.  The tree becomes abundant and shades out native vegetation, preventing the regeneration of native shrubs and trees and strongly reducing species richness under its canopies.  Seedlings develop a strong root system before significant vertical growth commences and are thus highly competitive to native species"  (Weber, 2003; p. 345).

In New Zealand, "hillsides, forest margins, sand dunes, wasteland, stream margins, around plantations and shelterbelts and roadsides up to c. 300 m.  Widespread in cultivation and as a relic, and is a very hardy species which thrives in cold, upland, interior localities as well as many warmer lowland and coastal places.  It seeds freely and is fully naturalised in many temperate countries"  (Webb et al., 1988; p. 1093).  In China, "forests, stream sides in valleys, gravelly slopes, also cultivated; 800--2000 m"  (Flora of China online).

Propagation:  Seed, dispersed by birds and mammals  (Weber, 2003; p. 345).

Native range:  Europe and Asia; widely cultivated, naturalized where not native in Europe, British Isles, tropical Asia, Australia, New Zealand & United States (GRIN).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
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
cultivated
Danton, Philippe/Perrier, Christophe/Martinez Reyes, Guido (2006) (p. 556)
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
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand (country) introduced
invasive
Webb, C. J./Sykes, W. R./Garnock-Jones, P. J. (1988) (p. 1093)
United States (west coast)
United States (west coast states)
USA (California) introduced
U.S. Dept. Agr., Nat. Res. Cons. Serv. (2013)
Also reported from
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
United States (continental except west coast)
United States (other states)
United States (other states) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)

Control: 

Physical:  "Seedlings and saplings can be pulled or dug out.  Larger trees are cut or ringbarked.  Fruiting trees should be removed first to prevent seed dispersal".

Chemical.  "Dense seedling growth can be treated with herbicide"  (Weber, 2003; p. 345).


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

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This page was created on 13 DEC 2008 and was last updated on 20 JAN 2011.