Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Triplaris americana
L., Polygonaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Common name(s): [more details]

English: ant tree, triplaris

Habit:  tree

Description:  "Trees (5-) 10-20 (-30) m tall, trunks to 30 cm in diameter. Bark mottled grey, smooth; twigs light brown to brown, striate, glabrous or occasionally pilose-tomentose. Ocreae 10-12 cm long, appressedly golden-pilose especially apically. Petioles 10-25 (-40) x 4-8 mm, rather stout, canaliculate, glabrous or brownish-puberulous to pilose beneath; leaf blades ovate to oblong, 2-2.5 times as long as broad, (15-) 25-35 (-40) x (7-) 10-16 (-20) cm, apically abruptly acuminate, basally rounded to acute or slightly attenuate, glabrous above, beneath glabrous to brownish-tomentose along the mid-vein and lateral veins, 20-30 pairs of lateral veins. Axes of inflorescences densely greyish-yellow velutinous with hairs up to 3 mm long, individual branches up to 35 cm long. Staminate inflorescences: bracts inconspicuous; bracteoles 3 mm long, densely plilose outside, glabrous inside; perianth 2-2.5 mm long, basally connate for 0.5 mm; anthers 0.5-0.75 mm long. Pistillate inflorescences: bracts 1.5 mm long, acute, appressedly pilose; bracteoles 3-6 (-9) mm long, appressedly pilose to velutinous outside, glabrous inside. Pedicels at fruiting stage 2-4 (-6) mm long, tomentose; perianth at fruiting stage (2.5-) 3.0-4.0 (-5.0) cm long, the oblong-urceolate tubes (6-) 8-12 (-15) x 4-9 mm, outside and inside softly patent pilose; wings 2-2.5 times the length of tubes, 20-35 x 4-9 mm, oblong to oblanceolate, apically rounded, sparsely and appressedly puberulous; inner perianth segments (4-) 6-8 (-10) x (0.5-) 1-2 (-6) mm, narrowly ovate to lanceolate or obovate, somewhat chartaceous with distinct veins, occasionally with sparse whitish, appressed hairs, not adnate to the calyx tube. Achenes 6-10 x 4-6 mm, slightly trigonous to terete basally, medially more or less prominently sulcate, inner perianth segments fitting in the sulci, olivaceous to brown, lustrous, glabrous, without beak; styles 3-4 mm long" (Brandbyge, 1989; pp. 50-51).

Habitat/ecology:  (no habitat/ecology info known by PIER)

Propagation:  Seed

Native range:  Southern Panama to southeastern Brazil (Brandbyge, 1989; pp. 50-51).

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
Hawai‘i (Big) Island introduced
cultivated
Imada, Clyde T./Staples, George W./Herbst, Derral R. (2013) (p. Voucher specimen)
Voucher cited: Ooka 20403 (BISH 63782)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island introduced
cultivated
Imada, Clyde T./Staples, George W./Herbst, Derral R. (2013) (p. Voucher specimen)
Voucher cited: Neal s.n. (BISH 63783)
Pacific Rim
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Singapore
Singapore
Singapore (Republic of) introduced
abo. intro.
Chong, Kwek Yan/Tan, Hugh T. W./Corlett, Richard T. (2009) (p. 88)
Cultivated only

Comments:  A declared noxious weed in South Africa.

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

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

Taxonomic information about Triplaris americana may be available from the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN).

References:

Brandbyge, J. 1989. 34. Polygonaceae. In: Harling, G. and L. Andersson, eds. Flora of Ecuador 38.

Chong, Kwek Yan/Tan, Hugh T. W./Corlett, Richard T. 2009. A checklist of the total vascular plant flora of Singapore: native, naturalised and cultivated species. Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, National University of Singapore. 273 pp.

Imada, Clyde T./Staples, George W./Herbst, Derral R. 2013. Annotated Checklist of Cultivated Plants of Hawai‘i (online searchable database).

U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. 2013. National Genetic Resources Program. Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Online searchable database.


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

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This page was created on 18 JAN 2004 and was last updated on 27 OCT 2006.