Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Datasheet

Arthraxon hispidus
(small carpetgrass)

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Datasheet

Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 10 December 2019
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Arthraxon hispidus
  • Preferred Common Name
  • small carpetgrass
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Monocotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • A. hispidus is a sprawling grass, native to East and Southern Asia, and Africa. It has been widely introduced across North and Central America and the Caribbean, and was first recorded in the USA in the 1870s. In West Virginia and in Mary...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); habit. USA
TitleHabit
CaptionArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); habit. USA
Copyright©Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); habit. USA
HabitArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); habit. USA©Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); foliage, leaves and stem. USA
TitleHabit
CaptionArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); foliage, leaves and stem. USA
Copyright©Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); foliage, leaves and stem. USA
HabitArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); foliage, leaves and stem. USA©Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of leaves and stem. USA
TitleLeaves and stem
CaptionArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of leaves and stem. USA
Copyright©Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of leaves and stem. USA
Leaves and stemArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of leaves and stem. USA©Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); flower(s), inflorescence. USA
TitleInflorescence
CaptionArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); flower(s), inflorescence. USA
Copyright© Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut/Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); flower(s), inflorescence. USA
InflorescenceArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); flower(s), inflorescence. USA© Leslie J. Mehrhoff/University of Connecticut/Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of seeds. USA
TitleSeeds
CaptionArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of seeds. USA
Copyright©Steve Hurst/USDA NRCS PLANTS Database/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Arthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of seeds. USA
SeedsArthraxon hispidus (small carpetgrass, joint-head grass); close-up of seeds. USA©Steve Hurst/USDA NRCS PLANTS Database/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Arthraxon hispidus (Thunb.) Makino (1912)

Preferred Common Name

  • small carpetgrass

Other Scientific Names

  • Arthraxon ciliaris P. Beauv. (1812)
  • Arthraxon micans (Nees) Hochst. (1856)
  • Arthraxon quartinianus (A, Rich.) Nash (1812)
  • Digitaria hispida (Thunb. (Spreng.) (1825)
  • Lasiolytrum hispidum (Thunb.) Steud. (1846)
  • Phalaris hispida Thunb. (1784)

International Common Names

  • English: hairy joint grass; small carpet grass

Local Common Names

  • Bhutan: charay naten
  • China: jin cau
  • Japan: kobuna-gusa
  • USA: basket grass; jointhead arthraxon; jointhead grass; small carp grass

Summary of Invasiveness

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A. hispidus is a sprawling grass, native to East and Southern Asia, and Africa. It has been widely introduced across North and Central America and the Caribbean, and was first recorded in the USA in the 1870s. In West Virginia and in Maryland, USA, A. hispidus is seen as a potential competitor to the endangered species Ptilimnium nodosum; 'Over the past decade, this aggressive grass has become widespread in many parts of the state (W. Virginia). As an annual it can compete directly…. for occupation of ephemeral habitat; without control, A. hispidus could overrun and locally extirpate P. nodosum.’ (US Fish and Wildlife Service, 1990; 1998). It is listed as an invasive weed in a number of other states of USA, such as Kentucky (Louisville Water Company, 2013). Although widespread as a weed elsewhere, it has not otherwise been described as invasive, while in Australia it is itself treated as a threatened species (Australia, 2013).

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Monocotyledonae
  •                     Order: Cyperales
  •                         Family: Poaceae
  •                             Genus: Arthraxon
  •                                 Species: Arthraxon hispidus

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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Arthraxon hispidus was originally named by Thunberg as Phalaris hispida. It was subsequently re-named Digitaria hispida, and as Lasiolytrum hispidum. There are many other synonyms listed by Missouri Botanical Garden (2013) and by The Plant List (2013) but few of these are thought to be in current use. Possible exceptions are A. ciliaris, A. micans and A. quartinianus. Most authorities treat these as synonyms but Noltie (2000) considers that a form in Bhutan corresponding to A. quartinianus is sufficiently distinct from A. hispidus to deserve separate recognition. Occurrences in Africa are mostly recorded as A. micans or A. quartinianus but with some determined as A. hispidus.Clayton and Renvoize (1982) note that “A. micans is very closely allied to the Asiatic species A. hispidus…Typical specimens from Africa and the Far East are reasonably distinct, but the two species intermingle in India, where they are often difficult to separate with any confidence; it is arguable that the African plants should be treated as a subspecies.” These authors also list A. quartinianus as a synonym for A. micans.

Flora Zambesiaca (2013) uses the name A. micans but notes that Van Welzen (1981) in his revision of the genus “took a broad species concept and considered A. micans to be the same as the Asiatic A. hispidus (Thunb.) Makino, calling it var. hispidus.” Flora Zambesiaca (2013) also treats A. quartinianus as a synonym for A. micans.

For the purpose of this data sheet, A. ciliaris, A. micans and A. quartinianus are all treated as synonyms.

A number of subspecies and varieties have been named (Missouri Botanic Garden, 2013), including var. hispidus and var. centrasiaicus, which are distinguished in the Flora of China (2013). In USA, specimens were generally attributed to var. hispidus and var. cryptatherus but the distinction is no longer regarded as reliable.

Description

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A. hispidus is sometimes considered to be perennial, as in Bhutan where it is described as ‘usually perennial’ (Noltie, 2000), but it is more commonly described as annual. It is a sprawling plant, rooting at the nodes with flowering stems up to 30 cm high; nodes hairy. Leaves are relatively short and broad, narrowly obovate up to 5 cm long and 15 mm wide, auricled at the base and acutely tipped, variably glabrous or hairy on the margins. Ligule 0.5-3 mm. Inflorescence a set of up to 10 or more racemes, up to 5 cm long, pale green or purple, variously glabrous to shortly hairy. Sessile spikelet up to 7 mm long; lower glume lanceolate, convex, 6-9-nerved with scabrid veins. Upper glume slightly longer with awn up to 11 mm long in typical forms but may be much shorter and hardly exserted. Pedicelled spikelet occasionally present at the tip of the raceme, but usually absent with pedicel a stump up to 2 mm long. Anthers 2, about 1 mm long.

Plant Type

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Annual
Grass / sedge
Herbaceous
Perennial
Seed propagated
Vegetatively propagated

Distribution

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A. hispidus is native to East and Southern Asia, and to Africa; occurrences in East Africa (mostly as A. micans or A. quartinianus) are treated by Clayton and Renvoize (1982) as native and the species in this wider sense is presumed to be native to the continent as a whole. It has been introduced further west in Asia, into Iran (Hamzeh'ee and Naqinezhad, 2009) and Georgia (Kolakovskii and Yabrova-Kalakovskaya, 1976) and quite widely into North and Central America and the Caribbean, also locally into South America.

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Last updated: 10 Jan 2020
Continent/Country/Region Distribution Last Reported Origin First Reported Invasive Reference Notes

Africa

AngolaPresentNative
BurundiPresentNativeAs A. micans
CameroonPresentNativeAs A. quartinianus
Central African RepublicPresentNativeAs A. micans
Congo, Democratic Republic of thePresentNativeAs A. quartinianus, A. micans
Equatorial GuineaPresentNative
EritreaPresentNativeAs A. quartinianus
EthiopiaPresentNativeAs A. quartinianus, A. micans
GhanaPresentNativeAs A. quartinianus
GuineaPresentNativeAs A. quartinianus
KenyaPresentNativeAs A. micans
MadagascarPresentNativeAs A. mauritianus
MalawiPresentNativeAs A. micans
MauritiusPresentNativeAs A. micans
MozambiquePresentNativeAs A. micans
NigeriaPresentNativeAs A. quartinianus
RwandaPresentNativeAs A. micans
Sierra LeonePresentNative
SomaliaPresentNativeAs A. micans
TanzaniaPresentNativeAs A. micans
UgandaPresentNativeAs A. micans
ZambiaPresentNativeAs A. micans

Asia

BangladeshPresentNativeAs A. micans
BhutanPresentNative
ChinaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-AnhuiPresentNative
-FujianPresentNative
-GuangdongPresentNative
-GuizhouPresentNative
-HainanPresentNative
-HebeiPresentNative
-HeilongjiangPresentNative
-HenanPresentNative
-HubeiPresentNative
-Inner MongoliaPresentNative
-JiangsuPresentNative
-JiangxiPresentNative
-NingxiaPresentNative
-ShaanxiPresentNative
-ShandongPresentNative
-SichuanPresentNative
-XinjiangPresentNative
-YunnanPresentNative
-ZhejiangPresent
GeorgiaPresent, LocalizedIntroducedFirst recorded in 1976; Original citation: Kolakovskii and Yabrova-Kalakovskaya (1976)
IndiaPresentNative
-Arunachal PradeshPresentNative
-BiharPresentNative
-KarnatakaPresentNative
-Madhya PradeshPresentNative
-NagalandPresentNative
-Tamil NaduPresentNative
-West BengalPresentNative
IndonesiaPresentNative
IranPresentIntroduced
JapanPresentNative
-HokkaidoPresentNative
-HonshuPresentNative
-KyushuPresentNative
-ShikokuPresentNative
KazakhstanPresentNative
KyrgyzstanPresentNative
LaosPresentNative
MalaysiaPresentNative
MyanmarPresentNative
NepalPresentNative
OmanPresentNative
PakistanPresentNative
PhilippinesPresentNative
South KoreaPresentNative
Sri LankaPresentNative
TaiwanPresentNative
TajikistanPresentNative
ThailandPresentNative
TurkeyPresentNative
UzbekistanPresentNative
VietnamPresentNative
YemenPresentNativeAs A. micans

Europe

MonacoPresent, LocalizedAs A. ciliaris
RussiaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Russian Far EastPresentNative

North America

Costa RicaPresentIntroducedAlajuela
El SalvadorPresentIntroduced
GuadeloupePresentIntroduced
GuatemalaPresentIntroducedQuetzaltenango
HondurasPresentIntroducedFrancisco Morazan
JamaicaPresentIntroduced
MexicoPresentIntroducedChaiapas and Colima
NicaraguaPresentIntroducedMatagalpa
United StatesPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-AlabamaPresentIntroduced
-ArkansasPresentIntroduced
-ConnecticutPresentIntroduced
-DelawarePresentIntroduced
-District of ColumbiaPresentIntroduced
-FloridaPresentIntroduced
-GeorgiaPresentIntroduced
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced
-IndianaPresentIntroduced
-KansasPresentIntroduced
-KentuckyPresentIntroduced
-LouisianaPresentIntroduced
-MarylandPresentIntroduced
-MassachusettsPresentIntroduced
-MississippiPresentIntroduced
-MissouriPresentIntroduced
-New JerseyPresentIntroducedFirst collected in 1965
-New YorkPresentIntroduced
-North CarolinaPresentIntroduced
-OhioPresentIntroduced
-OklahomaPresentIntroduced
-OregonPresentIntroduced
-PennsylvaniaPresentIntroduced
-South CarolinaPresentIntroduced
-TennesseePresentIntroduced
-TexasPresentIntroduced1991
-VirginiaPresentIntroduced
-West VirginiaPresentIntroducedInvasive

Oceania

AustraliaPresentNative
-New South WalesPresentNative
-QueenslandPresentNative
Papua New GuineaPresentNative

South America

ColombiaPresentIntroduced
EcuadorPresentIntroduced
VenezuelaPresentIntroducedPortuguesa, Trujillo

History of Introduction and Spread

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Kiger (1971) reviews the introduction and spread of A. hispidus in USA, the first records being from the 1870s when it was known as A. ciliaris. Later records distinguish two forms as A. hispidus var. cryptatherus with smaller spikelets and awns not exserted, and var. hispidus with larger distinctly awned spikelets. But all intermediates occur and the distinction is no longer considered reliable. In 1935 it was known from Florida, Arkansas, Missouri and Oregon. By 1950 it was recorded also in Maryland, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, North Virginia and Washington. By 1968, it was found in North and South Carolina and in Mississippi (Kiger, 1971). Nesom (2011) records its arrival in Texas in 1991. In Mexico, the earliest specimen recorded by GBIF (2013) is from 1964, but it may have been there much earlier. Other records from Central America and the Caribbean are mostly later than this.

Introductions

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Introduced toIntroduced fromYearReasonIntroduced byEstablished in wild throughReferencesNotes
Natural reproductionContinuous restocking
USA 1870s No No Kiger (1971) Under name of A. ciliaris

Risk of Introduction

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In the USA, A. hispidus is already well established in the southern half of the Torrey Range and is expected to spread further into the northern half (Lamont and Glenn, 2009). This could result in competition between this weed, which is known to form dense stands in suitable conditions (Leck and Leck, 2005), and the native vegetation.

Habitat

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In USA, Kiger (1971) records occurrence in a wide range of habitats from wet to relatively dry; in shallow water and along stream and pond edges, on sand bars, in low woods and in fields, roadsides and gardens. In New Jersey, USA, it colonized a tidal freshwater mitigation wetland near the high tide line where it was present for several years until replaced by taller species, such as Phragmites australis (Leck and Leck, 2005). Nesom (2011) records it in lawns in Texas, USA. It is also a common weed of orchards, tea fields, and roadsides (Bugwood, 2013). In China, it is a plant of streamsides, damp meadows, among crops and in other moist places, up to 2300 m (Flora of China, 2013). A number of publications from China refer to the co-dominance of A. hispidus in the understory of several forest species including pines. It is noted occurring in shady clearings in West Africa (Hutchinson et al., 1972).

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial
Terrestrial ManagedCultivated / agricultural land Secondary/tolerated habitat Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial ManagedManaged forests, plantations and orchards Secondary/tolerated habitat Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial ManagedManaged grasslands (grazing systems) Secondary/tolerated habitat Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial ManagedDisturbed areas Principal habitat Natural
Terrestrial ManagedRail / roadsides Principal habitat Natural
Terrestrial ManagedUrban / peri-urban areas Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalNatural forests Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalNatural grasslands Secondary/tolerated habitat Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalNatural grasslands Secondary/tolerated habitat Natural
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalRiverbanks Principal habitat Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalRiverbanks Principal habitat Natural
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalWetlands Principal habitat Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalWetlands Principal habitat Natural

Hosts/Species Affected

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A. hispidus occurs in tea fields, orchards, grasslands and gardens, but no serious damage has been recorded. It is a weed of direct-seeded, dry-sown rice in Korea (Ku et al., 1993).

Host Plants and Other Plants Affected

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Plant nameFamilyContextReferences
Camellia sinensis (tea)TheaceaeMain
    Oryza sativa (rice)PoaceaeMain

      Growth Stages

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      Flowering stage, Seedling stage, Vegetative growing stage

      Biology and Ecology

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      Genetics

      A. hispidus is described by Chen and Phillips (2006) as an extremely polymorphic, polyploid species with 2n =10, 18 or 36. Aguillera et al. (2011) indicates n = 9, so the commonest forms with 2n = 36 are presumably tetraploid.        

      Reproductive Biology

      A. hispidus establishes from seed each year. Very little detailed information is available on germination but Wang and Gao (2010) report the effects of prolonged submergence; there was a stimulatory effect of short-term (30 days) submergence but inhibition from more prolonged submergence.

      Physiology and Phenology

      Usually behaving as an annual A. hispidus establishes from seed each year. Flowering stems appear towards the end of the summer in USA.

      Shi et al. (2007) confirm that A. hispidus has C4 metabolism and demonstrate the effects of soil water and wind velocity on associated leaf anatomy.

      Ueno (1995) describes bundle-sheath-like cells that are not associated with vascular tissue. Known as distinctive cells, they occasionally occur as single or multiple files in the mesophyll in leaves of A. hispidus.

      Longevity

      Sometimes described as perennial, but no indication of any prolonged perennation.

      Nutrition

      A. hispidus is apparently favoured by high nitrogen levels as it decreased markedly when grassland ceased to be fertilized (Kondo et al., 1985).

      Hwang et al. (2003) noted that A. hispidus at sites in Korea was associated with soils high in magnesium and phosphorous.

      Associations

      In Korean arboreta, A. hispidus was associated with Digitaria sanguinalis (Hwang et al., 2003). 

      Environmental Requirements

      A. hispidus is apparently favoured by relatively moist conditions and full or at least partial sunlight. A. hispidus does not tolerate acidic soils, a pH of 5.6 proving fatal in a study by Suaghara (1981).

      In Japan, A. hispidus was found to be more common in upland conditions than lowland, but had a wider tolerance of moisture conditions than some other C4 grasses (Takeda et al., 1977).

      Yan et al. (2006) observed that A. hispidus is highly tolerant of manganese and copper on old mining sites.

      It is apparently quite tolerant of ozone and acid rain (Ohkuru et al., 1993).

      Climate

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      ClimateStatusDescriptionRemark
      Af - Tropical rainforest climate Preferred > 60mm precipitation per month
      Am - Tropical monsoon climate Preferred Tropical monsoon climate ( < 60mm precipitation driest month but > (100 - [total annual precipitation(mm}/25]))
      As - Tropical savanna climate with dry summer Tolerated < 60mm precipitation driest month (in summer) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])
      Aw - Tropical wet and dry savanna climate Preferred < 60mm precipitation driest month (in winter) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])
      BS - Steppe climate Tolerated > 430mm and < 860mm annual precipitation
      BW - Desert climate Tolerated < 430mm annual precipitation
      Cf - Warm temperate climate, wet all year Tolerated Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, wet all year
      Cs - Warm temperate climate with dry summer Preferred Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, dry summers
      Cw - Warm temperate climate with dry winter Preferred Warm temperate climate with dry winter (Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, dry winters)

      Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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      Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
      45 30

      Rainfall Regime

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      Bimodal
      Summer
      Uniform
      Winter

      Soil Tolerances

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      Soil drainage

      • free
      • impeded
      • seasonally waterlogged

      Soil reaction

      • neutral

      Soil texture

      • light
      • medium

      Special soil tolerances

      • shallow

      Natural enemies

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      Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
      Agrotis ipsilon Predator
      Agrotis segetum Predator
      Agrotis tokionis Predator
      Albugo ipomoeae-panduratae Pathogen
      Anomis flava Predator
      Bremia graminicola Pathogen to species
      Colletotrichum destructivum Pathogen not specific
      Ephelis oryzae Pathogen
      Helicoverpa armigera Predator
      Helicoverpa assulta Predator
      Mamestra brassicae Predator
      Mycovellosiella arthraxonis Pathogen not specific
      Phyllachora arthraxonis Pathogen
      Puccinia aestivalis Pathogen
      Puccinia arthraxonis Pathogen
      Puccinia arthraxonis-ciliaris Pathogen
      Puccinia benguetensis Pathogen
      Pyrrhia umbra Predator
      Sphacelotheca arthraxonis Pathogen
      Sphaeroderma apicale Predator
      Spodoptera littoralis Predator
      Thanatephorus cucumeris Pathogen
      Xylena formosa Predator

      Notes on Natural Enemies

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      Bugwood (2013) lists a range of fungal and invertebrate species associated with Arthraxon species (see Natural Enemies Table) but it is not clear which of these affect A. hispidus.

      The fungus Bremia graminicola is thought likely to be host specific to A. hispidus (Q-Bank, 2013).

      Colletotrichum destructivum has been identified on the grass in Japan (Takeuchi et al., 2012).

      Mycovellosiella arthraxonis (a new species) is reported from China by Guo and Xu (2002).

      Vánky (2001) notes records of Sphacelotheca arthraxonis on A. quartinianus.

      Ephelis oryzae was reported in India by Rao et al. (1959).

      Means of Movement and Dispersal

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      Natural Dispersal (Non-Biotic)

      A. hispidus has no specialized dispersal mechanism so seeds are presumably spread by cultivation, water and strong winds.

      Accidental Introduction

      Its introduction has presumably been as a result of the introduction of contaminated grass seeds or hay, but there is no documentation of this.

      Intentional Introduction   

      Deliberate introduction may have occurred occasionally where there was interest in growing the species for its yellow dye, but no documentation has been seen.

      Pathway Causes

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      CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
      Crop production Yes Yes
      Forage Yes Yes
      Hitchhiker Yes Yes
      Seed trade Yes Yes

      Pathway Vectors

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      VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
      Aircraft Yes
      Floating vegetation and debris Yes
      Plants or parts of plants Yes
      Water Yes
      Wind Yes

      Plant Trade

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      Plant parts liable to carry the pest in trade/transportPest stagesBorne internallyBorne externallyVisibility of pest or symptoms
      True seeds (inc. grain) seeds

      Impact Summary

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      CategoryImpact
      Economic/livelihood Positive and negative
      Environment (generally) Negative

      Economic Impact

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      A. hispidus occurs in tea fields, orchards, grasslands and gardens (Q-Bank, 2013), but no serious damage has been recorded. It is a weed of direct-seeded, dry-sown rice in Korea (Ku et al., 1993) but again is not regarded as a significant problem.

      Environmental Impact

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      Impact on Habitats

      In its introduced range in USA, A. hispidus has a high seed bank capability and so is noted to form dense stands in suitable moist conditions and does therefore have the potential to modify the habitat.     

      Impact on Biodiversity

      As the species can form dense stands, particularly along shorelines, it may negatively impact other species and threaten native vegetation (Ohtsuka and Ohsawa 1994, Leck and Leck 2005). In West Virginia and in Maryland, USA, A. hispidus is seen as a potential competitor to the endangered species Ptilimnium nodosum (Apiaceae): ‘Over the past decade, this aggressive grass has become widespread in many parts of the state (West Virginia). As an annual it can compete directly….for occupation of ephemeral habitat; without control, A. hispidus could overrun and locally extirpate P. nodosum’ (US Fish and Wildlife Service, 1990; 1998).

      Although widespread as a weed elsewhere, it has not generally been described as invasive.

      Threatened Species

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      Threatened SpeciesConservation StatusWhere ThreatenedMechanismReferencesNotes
      Ptilimnium nodosum (harperella)NatureServe; USA ESA listing as endangered speciesAlabama; Maryland; West VirginiaCompetition - monopolizing resources; Competition - stranglingFish and Wildlife (1998); US Fish and Wildlife Service (1990); US Fish and Wildlife Service (1988)
      Spiraea virginiana (Virginia spiraea)No DetailsGeorgia; Kentucky; North Carolina; Ohio; Tennessee; Virginia; West VirginiaCompetition (unspecified)US Fish and Wildlife Service (1992)
      Xyris tennesseensis (Tennessee yellow-eyed grass)USA ESA listing as endangered speciesUSAEcosystem change / habitat alterationUS Fish and Wildlife Service (1994)

      Risk and Impact Factors

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      Invasiveness
      • Proved invasive outside its native range
      • Has a broad native range
      • Pioneering in disturbed areas
      • Fast growing
      • Has high reproductive potential
      • Gregarious
      • Has propagules that can remain viable for more than one year
      • Reproduces asexually
      • Has high genetic variability
      Impact outcomes
      • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
      • Reduced native biodiversity
      • Threat to/ loss of endangered species
      Impact mechanisms
      • Competition - monopolizing resources
      • Competition - strangling
      • Competition (unspecified)
      Likelihood of entry/control
      • Difficult to identify/detect as a commodity contaminant
      • Difficult to identify/detect in the field

      Uses

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      Economic Value

      Mouri et al. (2011) describe how A. hispidus has been the source of dyes long used in China and Japan. They further identify the flavonoids responsible for the colour from this species and from Misccanthus tinctorius and are able to confirm their use in some very old textiles, over 1000 years old. Ishigami et al. (2001) note that it is currently being cultivated for this purpose on Hachijo Island, Japan; the cultivated accessions show synchronous branching and heading, larger leaves, enlarged spikes and spikelets and longer internodes, and more uniform maturation compared with wild accessions.

      Social Benefit

      The plant has been used for relieving sore throats (Q-Bank, 2013).

      Uses List

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      Materials

      • Dyestuffs

      Medicinal, pharmaceutical

      • Traditional/folklore

      Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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      In Africa, A. lancifolius is distinguished from ‘A. quartinianus’ and ‘A. micans’ by more often having a developed pedicelled spikelet, racemes with long silky hairs, and leaves very short, only 1-4 cm.In Flora of China (2013)A. lancifolius and A. microphyllus are distinguished from A. hispidus by generally smooth spikelets; and A. multinervis by its taller stature up to 60 cm, and by 9-11 nerves on the lower glume.

      Gaps in Knowledge/Research Needs

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      There is a serious lack of information on germination requirements and longevity, and also on the plants response to herbicides.

      References

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      Aguillera PM, Davina JR, Honfi AI, 2011. IAPT/IOPB chromosome data 12. Taxon, 60(6):1784-1796.

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      Distribution References

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      Lamont E E, Glenn S D, 2009. Noteworthy plants reported from the Torrey Range - 2007 and 2008. Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society. 136 (4), 541-550. http://www.torreybotanical.org/journal.html DOI:10.3159/09-BR-060.1

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      Links to Websites

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      GISD/IASPMR: Invasive Alien Species Pathway Management Resource and DAISIE European Invasive Alien Species Gatewayhttps://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.m93f6Data source for updated system data added to species habitat list.

      Contributors

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      30/03/2013 Original text by:

      Chris Parker, Bristol, UK

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