Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)


Rubus ellipticus


RISK ASSESSMENT RESULTS: High risk, score: 18


Australian/New Zealand Weed Risk Assessment adapted for Hawai‘i.
Information on Risk Assessments
Original risk assessment
 Rubus ellipticus (Yellow Himalayan raspberry, yellow raspberry, cheeseberry) Synonyms: Rubus ellipticus var. obcordatus (Franch.) Focke, Rubus flavus Buch.-Ham. ex D. Don, Rubus gowreephul Roxb. Family - Rosaceae Answer Score
1.01 Is the species highly domesticated? n 0
1.02 Has the species become naturalized where grown?    
1.03 Does the species have weedy races?    
2.01 Species suited to tropical or subtropical climate(s) (0-low; 1-intermediate; 2-high) – If island is primarily wet habitat, then substitute “wet tropical” for “tropical or subtropical” 0  
2.02 Quality of climate match data (0-low; 1-intermediate; 2-high)                 see appendix 2 1  
2.03 Broad climate suitability (environmental versatility) y 1
2.04 Native or naturalized in regions with tropical or subtropical climates y 1
2.05 Does the species have a history of repeated introductions outside its natural range?  y=-2 y  
3.01 Naturalized beyond native range         y = 1*multiplier (see Append 2), n= question 2.05 y 1
3.02 Garden/amenity/disturbance weed                              y = 1*multiplier (see Append 2)    
3.03 Agricultural/forestry/horticultural weed                         y = 2*multiplier (see Append 2) y 2
3.04 Environmental weed                                                     y = 2*multiplier (see Append 2) y 2
3.05 Congeneric weed                                                          y = 1*multiplier (see Append 2) y 1
4.01 Produces spines, thorns or burrs y 1
4.02 Allelopathic n 0
4.03 Parasitic n 0
4.04 Unpalatable to grazing animals n -1
4.05 Toxic to animals n 0
4.06 Host for recognized pests and pathogens n 0
4.07 Causes allergies or is otherwise toxic to humans n 0
4.08 Creates a fire hazard in natural ecosystems n 0
4.09 Is a shade tolerant plant at some stage of its life cycle y 1
4.1 Tolerates a wide range of soil conditions (or limestone conditions if not a volcanic island) y 1
4.11 Climbing or smothering growth habit n 0
4.12 Forms dense thickets y 1
5.01 Aquatic n 0
5.02 Grass n 0
5.03 Nitrogen fixing woody plant y 1
5.04 Geophyte (herbaceous with underground storage organs -- bulbs, corms, or tubers) n 0
6.01 Evidence of substantial reproductive failure in native habitat n 0
6.02 Produces viable seed. y 1
6.03 Hybridizes naturally    
6.04 Self-compatible or apomictic    
6.05 Requires specialist pollinators n 0
6.06 Reproduction by vegetative fragmentation y 1
6.07 Minimum generative time (years)                 1 year = 1, 2 or 3 years = 0, 4+ years = -1 2 0
7.01 Propagules likely to be dispersed unintentionally (plants growing in heavily trafficked areas) y 1
7.02 Propagules dispersed intentionally by people y 1
7.03 Propagules likely to disperse as a produce contaminant y 1
7.04 Propagules adapted to wind dispersal n -1
7.05 Propagules water dispersed n -1
7.06 Propagules bird dispersed y 1
7.07 Propagules dispersed by other animals (externally) n -1
7.08 Propagules survive passage through the gut y 1
8.01 Prolific seed production (>1000/m2) y 1
8.02 Evidence that a persistent propagule bank is formed (>1 yr) y 1
8.03 Well controlled by herbicides y -1
8.04 Tolerates, or benefits from, mutilation, cultivation, or fire y 1
8.05 Effective natural enemies present locally (e.g. introduced biocontrol agents)    
  Total score:   18

Supporting data:

  Notes Reference
1.01 No evidence.  
1.02    
1.03    
2.01 (1)Native:
ASIA-TEMPERATE
China: China - Guangxi, Guizhou, Sichuan, Xizang [s.], Yunnan
ASIA-TROPICAL
Indian Subcontinent: Bhutan; India; Nepal; Pakistan; Sri Lanka
Indo-China: Myanmar; Thailand [n.]; Vietnam
Malesia: Philippines - Luzon (2)"Seed - requires stratification and is best sown in early autumn in a cold frame. Stored seed requires one month stratification at about 3°c and is best sown as early as possible in the year."  [The seeds of this species require cold stratification]
http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/tax_search.pl
2.02 naturalized in tropical Africa, tropical Southern America, West Indies, & Hawaii http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/tax_search.pl
2.03 "Shrubberies and open hillsides, to 2300 metres in the Himalayas. … It is hardy to zone 8." http://www.ibiblio.org/pfaf/cgi-bin/arr_html?Rubus+ellipticus
2.04 (1)naturalized in tropical Africa, tropical Southern America, West Indies, & Hawaii   (2)"Rubus ellipticus is naturalized in Hawai'i and elsewhere in the tropics." (1)http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/tax_search.pl  (2)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
2.05 (1)It has been introduced to several places, including Hawaii, Southern USA and the UK, and is grown in cultivation for its edible fruits.   (2)naturalized in tropical Africa, tropical Southern America, West Indies, & Hawaii (1)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=    (2)http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/tax_search.pl
3.01 (1)naturalized in tropical Africa, tropical Southern America, West Indies, & Hawaii   (2)"Rubus ellipticus is naturalized in Hawai'i and elsewhere in the tropics." (1)http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/tax_search.pl  (2)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
3.02 "Today, it is well established in disturbed wet forests, 1,800-5,580 ft (700-1,700 m) elevation, and thrives in sunny open pastures as well as deep rain forests." "This species has spread from cultivation and has become a pest in wet disturbed forests of Hawai'i. R. ellipticus forms impenetrable thickets and crowds out native species in moist to wet disturbed areas of Hawai'i from 2,270-5,580 ft (700-1,700 m) elevation." http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
3.03 (1)Invades pasture land.  (2)Occurs in: agricultural areas, disturbed areas, natural forests, range/grasslands (1)http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/faculty/gardner/biocontrol/Rubus%20spp/rubusell.htm   AND   http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm  (2)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
3.04 (1)"This species has spread from cultivation and has become a pest in wet disturbed forests of Hawai'i. R. ellipticus forms impenetrable thickets and crowds out native species in moist to wet disturbed areas of Hawai'i from 2,270-5,580 ft (700-1,700 m) elevation." "Rubus ellipticus is a noxious weed in Hawai'i."  (2)"This extremely thorny plant forms impenetrable thickets where it has become established, threatening native ecosystems (Jacobi and Warshauer 1986). In Hawaii this pest forms impenetrable thickets, threatening native lowland wet forests and displacing native plant species, including the native Hawaiian raspberry species Rubus hawaiiensis (Benton 1997)." (1)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm  (2)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
3.05 Rubus argutus: (1) an extremely serious weed naturalized in a variety of disturbed habitats, including mesic to wet forest and subalpine grassland, 200-2,300 m " (2)The major threats to Alsinidendron obovatum are competition from  the aggressive nonnative plant species...Rubus argutus  (3)Alsinidendron lychnoides (kuawawaenohu) -- The major threats to this species are competition from the  aggressive nonnative plant species Rubus argutus (prickly Florida blackberry) (4)This thorny scrambler is a noxious weed which rapidly invades disturbed areas between 1,000-2,300 m.It forms impenetrable thickets (5)Hawaii Noxious weed (6)Exocarpos luteolus -- Aggressive alien taxa degrading this plant's habitat include Acacia mearnsii (black wattle), Corynocarpus laevigatus (karakanut), Myrica faya (firetree), and Rubus argutus (1)Wagner, W.L., D.R. Herbst and S.H. Sohmer. 1999. Manual of the flowering plants of Hawai'i. University of Hawai'i Press, Honolulu. pp. 1107, 1890. (2)http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/14mar20010800/edocket.access.gpo.gov/2003/03-11156.htm (3)http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/14mar20010800/edocket.access.gpo.gov/2003/03-2840.htm (4)http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/faculty/carr/rub_arg.htm (5)http://www.hawaii.edu/ehso/bio/weedlist.pdf
4.01 "Rubus ellipticus is a thorny shrub that originates from southern Asia." http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
4.02 No evidence  
4.03 No evidence  
4.04 "Cattle find the thorny raspberry canes indigestible." http://hawaiiislandjournal.com/2004/02b04b.htm
4.05 No evidence  
4.06 The following fungi species were listed to be associated with Rubus ellipticus:  Appendiculella calostroma: India - 6942
Calycellina tetraspora: India - 3420 , 6986
Cercoseptoria heteromalla: India - 16594
Cercospora rubi: India - 8459
Hamaspora benguetensis: China - 36727 ; India - 23527 ; Philippines - 7101
Hamaspora longissima: India - 7951
Lasiobelonium scabro-villosum: India - 6986
Meliola rubiella: India - 6942
Pseudocercospora heteromalla: India - 25629
Pseudocercosporella arcuata: Nepal - 32106
Strossmayeria jamaicensis: Jamaica - 7017
Uredo speciosa: India - 40305
[No evidence that the above are economic pests].
http://nt.ars-grin.gov/fungaldatabases/index.cfm
4.07 No evidence  
4.08 Probably not - an evergreen species which primarily inhabits wet areas.  
4.09 (1)"It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade."  (2)This species is well adapted to the full sun of open canopy forests and pastures as well as the deep shade of rain forests.  http://www.ibiblio.org/pfaf/cgi-bin/arr_html?Rubus+ellipticus
4.1 (1)"The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils."    (2)This species is well adapted to the full sun of open canopy forests and pastures as well as the deep shade of rain forests." (1)http://www.ibiblio.org/pfaf/cgi-bin/arr_html?Rubus+ellipticus  (2)http://www.nps.gov/plants/alien/fact/ruel1.htm
4.11 "Stout, weakly climbing, evergreen shrubs; stems often 30-40 dm long …" http://www.hear.org/Pier/species/rubus_ellipticus.htm
4.12 "This species has spread from cultivation and has become a pest in wet disturbed forests of Hawai'i. R. ellipticus forms impenetrable thickets and crowds out native species in moist to wet disturbed areas of Hawai'i from 2,270-5,580 ft (700-1,700 m) elevation. " http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
5.01 "An evergreen shrub growing to 4.5m." http://www.ibiblio.org/pfaf/cgi-bin/arr_html?Rubus+ellipticus
5.02    
5.03 (1)"Rubus ellipticus has been reported to be capable of nitrogen fixation on the island of Java (Becking 1979), although this has not been demonstrated in Hawai'i."  (2)Abstract: Nitrogenase activity as assayed by acetylene reduction was observed in detached R. ellipticus J.E. SMith root nodules collected in the field and tested under ambient conditions. The nitrogenase activity was 8.4 .mu.mol C2H4/g fresh wt nodule-1 h-1 or 24.0 .mu.mol C2H4/g dry wt nodule-1 h-1 at a rate comparable with that measured in some other non-legumes assayed in Java at the same time under similar conditions. Nodule morphology bore little resemblance to the root nodules of other non-leguminous plants and nodule structure was different from the other rosaceous examples. The endophyte inhabiting the root nodules was actinomycetal. (1)http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:7hA89CTBz30J:
www.botany.hawaii.edu/faculty/duffy/book/1990_chap/13.pdf
+%22Rubus+ellipticus%22+allelopathic%7Callelopathy&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=2   (2)BECKING J H NITROGEN FIXATION BY RUBUS-ELLIPTICUS  Plant and Soil 53 (4) : 541-546 1979
5.04    
6.01 "This fruit is distributed throughout the subtemperate Himalayas between 700 and 2,000 metres and to the east in Sikkim, Bhutan, Khasi Hills and Burma up to the Yunnan Province of China." http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/parmar/22.html
6.02 (1)Propagation: Rubus species can be propagated from seeds and cuttings   (2)"These ferns go through a "cleaning" before they are shipped, but apparently weed seeds that lay dormant in the fern are not detected. Some time later, these weeds germinate in their new locations. Other weed species including Melastoma spp., Psidium spp., and Rubus spp. have been observed germinating on the surfaces of hapu'u ferns. Some of these, including Rubus ellipticus, are noxious weeds, which are illegal to transport inter-island." (1)http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:WV8_fRMa27AJ:
www.hear.org/Pier/pdf/pohreports/rubus_ellipticus.pdf+%22
Rubus+ellipticus%22+control&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=1   (2)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
6.03 Don’t know. [There is abundant literature on hybridization in the Rubus genus however no evidence of any involving Rubus ellipticus. In Hawaii Rubus rosifolius and Rubus hawaiensis have been documented to form hybrids and their range is known to overlap with that of Rubus ellipticus.] Randell, Rebecca A.; Howarth, Dianella G.; Morden, Clifford W.
Genetic analysis of natural hybrids between endemic and alien Rubus (Rosaceae) species in Hawai'i
Conservation Genetics 5 (2) : 217-230 2004
6.04    
6.05 "Flowers are hermaphrodite and are pollinated by insects." http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
6.06 (1)"It spreads by vigorous vegetative growth as well as by birds and other mammals that eat the fruit."  (2)"Local dispersal methods: Consumption/excretion: As with other Rubus species the seeds of the yellow Himalayan raspberry are readily dispersed by birds (Jacobi and Warshauer 1986). Garden escape/garden waste: The plants spread into neighboring forests from underground shoots (Smith, Hawaiian Alien Plant Studies). Other (local): This species spreads rapidly by root suckers and will regenerate from underground shoots after fire or cutting (Benton 1997)." (1)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm   (2)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
6.07 "This species is a raspberry with biennial stems, it produces a number of new stems each year from the perennial rootstock, these stems fruit in their second year and then die." http://www.ibiblio.org/pfaf/cgi-bin/arr_html?Rubus+ellipticus
7.01 "On Maui, R. ellipticus is not yet established in the wild. However, plants have been observed on hapu'u (Cibotium spp.) tree ferns and parts that are shipped from infested areas of Hawai'i. … These ferns appear "clean" during transport, then seeds sprout some time later in their new locations. There are likely more locations on Maui where Rubus ellipticus will be found in the future. Rubus ellipticus is a noxious weed and strategies for preventing inter-island transport are needed." http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
7.02 (1)"Rubus ellipticus is widely cultivated as an ornamental in warm regions."  (2)"The inner bark of the R. ellipticus plant is valued as a medicinal herb in traditional Tibetan medicine, including its use as a renal tonic and antidiuretic. Its fruits are edible and can also be used to produce a purplish blue dye (Plants For A Future 2002)." (1)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm  (2)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
7.03 (1)"Weed: also potential seed contaminant   (fide Econ Pl Aust; Invasive Pl Spec)"   (2)"On Maui, R. ellipticus is not yet established in the wild. However, plants have been observed on hapu'u (Cibotium spp.) tree ferns and parts that are shipped from infested areas of Hawai'i. … These ferns appear "clean" during transport, then seeds sprout some time later in their new locations. There are likely more locations on Maui where Rubus ellipticus will be found in the future. Rubus ellipticus is a noxious weed and strategies for preventing inter-island transport are needed." (1)http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/taxon.pl?32308   (2)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
7.04 No evidence  
7.05 No evidence  
7.06 (1)"Rubus ellipticus is capable of aggressive vegetative growth. It can also be spread by animals that eat the fruit, including birds and mammals."  (2)Local dispersal methods
Consumption/excretion: As with other Rubus species the seeds of the yellow Himalayan raspberry are readily dispersed by birds (Jacobi and Warshauer 1986).
Garden escape/garden waste: The plants spread into neighboring forests from underground shoots (Smith, Hawaiian Alien Plant Studies).
Other (local): This species spreads rapidly by root suckers and will regenerate from underground shoots after fire or cutting (Benton 1997)" "Seeds are dispersed by fruit-eating birds and mammals."
(1)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm  (2)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
7.07 No evidence  
7.08 (1)"Rubus ellipticus is capable of aggressive vegetative growth. It can also be spread by animals that eat the fruit, including birds and mammals."  (2)Local dispersal methods
Consumption/excretion: As with other Rubus species the seeds of the yellow Himalayan raspberry are readily dispersed by birds (Jacobi and Warshauer 1986).
Garden escape/garden waste: The plants spread into neighboring forests from underground shoots (Smith, Hawaiian Alien Plant Studies).
Other (local): This species spreads rapidly by root suckers and will regenerate from underground shoots after fire or cutting (Benton 1997)" "Seeds are dispersed by fruit-eating birds and mammals."
(1)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm  (2)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
8.01 "Seeds, numerous, very small, 1 to 1.5 mm in diameter; weight, 246 mg per 100 seeds; volume of 100 seeds, 136 microlitres. … The yield varies with the size of the bush. The average yield of a bush, covering about 2.5 square metres, was recorded to be 754 g at Solan. It was also observed that the plants located at lower elevations are more productive than those located at higher elevations." [Probably yes - the average yeild per plant is about (754000*100)/246 ~ 306,500 seeds over 2.5 sq m]. http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/parmar/22.html
8.02 "A small laboratory study of seed treatments was conducted to compare germination rates of seeds from the soil seed bank, fresh seeds and seeds that had passed through the digestive tract of one of the more common non-native forest birds ... the study was carries out after all seeds had been stored in dry, cool conditions for 6 months." At 9 months 18% of the seeds germinated at 9 months. The laboratory experiment ... indicated that seeds from the soil seedbank had the highest germination rates (25% versus 2% fresh seeds versus 3% from seeds passed through the gut of Japanese white-eye birds). "The germination studies conducted in the field and lab demostrate that seeds from the soil seed bank and dry storage seeds may remain viable for long periods of time. The success of the germinants in the accidental light gap created in the coolest treatment provides a warning of the potential regerating power of this species even after adults have senesced, particularly if the adults limit the re-growth of other species as well."  [Probably yes - seeds collected from the soil seed bank were first stored for 6 months and then they various rates of germination were obtaine even into the 9th month since collection].  
8.03 "Control of Rubus species is not easily done. Often, the plant covers large areas, is hard to handle, is hard to kill, and re-sprouts. Chemical control in Hawai'i is done for other species of Rubus, but it is very difficult to completely remove established populations. ... Chemical control: Various forms of chemical methods can be used to control Rubus spp., including foliar, stem injection, cut stump and basal stem methods using glyphosate or triclopyr products. Santos et al. (1992) report that a 50% Garlon 4 in a foliar drizzle spray and a 20% Tordon 22K in water on cut stumps as moderately effective for Rubus ellipticus, though further testing was advised." http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm
8.04 (1)"Control of Rubus species is not easily done. Often, the plant covers large areas, is hard to handle, is hard to kill, and re-sprouts."  (2)"This species spreads rapidly by root suckers and will regenerate from underground shoots after fire or cutting." (1)http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/html/rubus_ellipticus.htm  (2)http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=79&fr=1&sts=
8.05 Don’t know.  

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