Invasive Species Compendium

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Datasheet

Acmella uliginosa
(marsh para cress)

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Datasheet

Acmella uliginosa (marsh para cress)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 13 November 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Acmella uliginosa
  • Preferred Common Name
  • marsh para cress
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Dicotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • A. uliginosa behaves as a weed in ruderal, cultivated fields, and disturbed forests (Randall, 2012). It is a fast-...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Acmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); habit. India. January 2010.
TitleHabit
CaptionAcmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); habit. India. January 2010.
Copyright©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Acmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); habit. India. January 2010.
HabitAcmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); habit. India. January 2010.©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Acmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); flowering habit. India. December 2010.
TitleFlowering habit
CaptionAcmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); flowering habit. India. December 2010.
Copyright©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Acmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); flowering habit. India. December 2010.
Flowering habitAcmella uliginosa (marsh para cress); flowering habit. India. December 2010.©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Acmella uliginosa (Sw.) Cass.

Preferred Common Name

  • marsh para cress

Other Scientific Names

  • Calea savannarum Standl. & Steyerm
  • Ceratocephalus acmella var. depauperata Kuntze
  • Ceratocephalus acmella var.uliginosa (Sw.) Kuntze
  • Coreopsis acmella var. uliginosa (Sw.) Baker
  • Spilanthes acmella var. uliginosa (Sw.) Baker
  • Spilanthes lundii DC.
  • Spilanthes lundii DeCandolle
  • Spilanthes uliginosa Sw.
  • Spilanthes uliginosa var. discoidea Aristeg.
  • Spilanthes uliginosa var. uliginosa

International Common Names

  • Spanish: chimapaya; chinapaya
  • Chinese: zhao sheng jin niu kou

Local Common Names

  • Fiji: mbotembotekoro
  • Haiti: créosote pays; herbe mal aux dents; herbe mal dents; z'herbe amal aux dents; z'herbe mal aux ents
  • Lesser Antilles: bouton d'or

Summary of Invasiveness

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A. uliginosa behaves as a weed in ruderal, cultivated fields, and disturbed forests (Randall, 2012). It is a fast-growing herb and under favourable conditions plants may grow copiously. This species is listed as invasive in Micronesia, Fiji and New Caledonia (Smith, 1991; MacKee, 1994; Herrera et al., 2010; PIER, 2014). In the West Indies, although this species is considered native for some islands, it is listed as a species of concern mostly due to its weedy behaviour. 

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Dicotyledonae
  •                     Order: Asterales
  •                         Family: Asteraceae
  •                             Genus: Acmella
  •                                 Species: Acmella uliginosa

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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Asteraceae is one of the largest families of flowering plants including about 1620 genera and more than 23,600 species (Stevens, 2012). Members of this family are very variable vegetatively, but may be recognized by their capitulate and involucrate inflorescences in which numerous small flowers open first on the outside and are only sometimes subtended by bracts. The rather small, single-seeded fruits usually have a plumose pappus and are frequently dispersed by wind (Stevens, 2012). The genus Acmella Rich. & Pers. includes about 30 species. The genus has very complex patterns of morphological and chromosomal variation that have caused difficulties in delimiting taxa. Most species within the genus Acmella are distributed in the tropics with matted to erect growth habits, and some have pantropical distributions (Jansen, 1985a). 

Description

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Annual, sometime perennial herb, 10-30(-50) cm tall. Stems solitary or several from base, erect to ascending or occasionally decumbent, green to purple, glabrous to moderately pilose. Petiole 0.5-1.5 cm, sparsely to moderately pilose, wingless or narrowly winged; leaf blade lanceolate, narrowly ovate to ovate, 1.3-5 × 0.3-2.5 cm, glabrous to sparsely pilose on both surfaces, base attenuate to cuneate, margin sinuate to dentate, sparsely ciliate, apex acute to acuminate. Capitula radiate, solitary or 2 or 3, terminal, ovoid, 5-8 × 4-6 mm; peduncles 1.2-3 cm, sparsely pilose; receptacle 3-6 × 0.5-1 mm; paleae straw-colored or sometimes with purple tinge early in flowering, 2.5-3.5 × 0.5 mm. Ray florets 4-7; corollas yellow to orange-yellow, 1.5-3.5 mm, tube 0.5-1.5 mm, lamina 3-toothed, 1-2 × 0.5-1.5 mm. Disk florets 68-148, yellow to orange-yellow, 4-merous; corollas 1-1.6 mm, tube 0.2-0.5 mm, throat 0.7-1.2 mm, lobes triangular, 0.2-0.3 × 0.2 mm. Achenes black, 1.2-1.8 mm, moderately to densely ciliate with straight-tipped hairs; pappus of 2 subequal or unequal bristles, longer one 0.2-0.7 mm, shorter one 0.1-0.5 mm (Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2014).

Distribution

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A. uliginosa is native to Africa, Asia and parts of the Americas. It is naturalized in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan and on several islands in the Pacific (see distribution table for details; Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2014; PIER, 2014; USDA-ARS, 2014). 

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.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes

Asia

ChinaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Hong KongPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee, 2014Naturalised
IndonesiaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
-JavaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Nusa TenggaraPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
-SumatraPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
JapanPresentIntroducedPIER, 2014Introduced on Ogasawara Island
MyanmarPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
NepalPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
PhilippinesPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
SingaporePresentChong et al., 2009Origin uncertain
Sri LankaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
TaiwanPresentIntroducedChung et al., 2007Naturalised
ThailandPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014

Africa

BeninPresentNativeEtèka et al., 2010
CameroonPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
Central African RepublicPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
CongoPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
GhanaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
GuineaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
KenyaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
LiberiaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
SenegalPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
Sierra LeonePresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
TanzaniaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014

Central America and Caribbean

Antigua and BarbudaPresentBroome et al., 2007Origin uncertain
DominicaPresentBroome et al., 2007Origin uncertain
Dominican RepublicPresentNativeAcevedo-Rodriguez and Strong, 2012
GuadeloupePresentBroome et al., 2007Origin uncertain
HaitiPresentNativeAcevedo-Rodriguez and Strong, 2012
HondurasPresentUSDA-ARS, 2014
JamaicaPresentNativeAcevedo-Rodriguez and Strong, 2012
MartiniquePresentBroome et al., 2007Origin uncertain
MontserratPresentBroome et al., 2007Origin uncertain
Netherlands AntillesPresentBroome et al., 2007Origin uncertain
Saint LuciaPresentNativeGraveson, 2012Rare
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesPresentBroome et al., 2007Origin uncertain
Trinidad and TobagoPresentNativeAcevedo-Rodriguez and Strong, 2012
United States Virgin IslandsPresentNativeAcevedo-Rodriguez and Strong, 2012St Croix

South America

BoliviaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
BrazilPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-AlagoasPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-BahiaPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-CearaPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-GoiasPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-MaranhaoPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-Minas GeraisPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-ParaPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-ParaibaPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-PernambucoPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-PiauiPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-Rio de JaneiroPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-Rio Grande do NortePresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-Sao PauloPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
-TocantinsPresentNativeMondin et al., 2014
French GuianaPresentNativeFunk et al., 2007
GuyanaPresentNativeFunk et al., 2007
SurinamePresentNativeFunk et al., 2007
VenezuelaPresentNativeFunk et al., 2007

Oceania

American SamoaPresentPIER, 2014
FijiPresentIntroduced Invasive Smith, 1991
Marshall IslandsPresentIntroducedFosberg et al., 1979
Micronesia, Federated states ofPresentIntroduced Invasive Herrera et al., 2010
New CaledoniaPresentIntroduced Invasive MacKee, 1994
Papua New GuineaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
Solomon IslandsPresentSwarbrick, 1997
TongaPresentSwarbrick, 1997

History of Introduction and Spread

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A. uliginosa is a weed which is often used as a medicinal herb. Therefore, it is probable that introductions of this species into new habitats have resulted from the plant escaping after intentional or careless introductions. A. uliginosa is reported as “recently introduced and naturalized” in Japan, and in Taiwan it was reported as naturalized as recently as 2007 (Chung et al., 2007; Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2014; PIER, 2014). It was reported as a new record for Chhattisgarh state, India, in 2014 (Tiwari and Ansari, 2014).

Risk of Introduction

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The risk of introduction of A. uliginosa is moderate to high. Under favourable environmental conditions, this species has the potential to grow copiously in disturbed areas, agricultural land, and along roadsides and forest edges where it behaves as a weed (Chung et al., 2007; Randall, 2012; PIER, 2014). It produces small seeds < 2 mm) which can be easily dispersed by wind and water and also as a contaminant in soil, agricultural machinery and crops. Thus, the likelihood of colonizing new habitats remains relatively high for this species. 

Habitat

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A. uliginosa grows mostly in disturbed areas along roadsides, in cultivated fields, in marshes, streams, pastures, meadows, and in forests from sea level to 1200 m in elevation (Chung et al., 2007; PROTA, 2014; PIER, 2014). Although this species is typically erect and lacks roots at the nodes, when it grows under very wet conditions it becomes decumbent and produces nodal roots on lower portions of the stems (Jansen, 1985a). 

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial
 
Terrestrial – ManagedManaged forests, plantations and orchards Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Managed forests, plantations and orchards Present, no further details Natural
Disturbed areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Disturbed areas Present, no further details Natural
Rail / roadsides Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Rail / roadsides Present, no further details Natural
Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-naturalNatural grasslands Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Natural grasslands Present, no further details Natural
Littoral
Coastal areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Coastal areas Present, no further details Natural

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics

The chromosome number reported for A. uliginosa is n = 26 (Jansen, 1985b).

Reproductive Biology and Phenology

A. uliginosa produces flowers and fruits all year-round (Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2014).

Longevity

A. uliginosa grows as an annual or perennial herb (PIER, 2014).

Environmental Requirements

A. uliginosa grows best in wet sand, clay, loam, or gravelly soils especially in disturbed sites from sea level to 1200 metres in elevation (Jansen, 1985a). It thrives under wet and sunny conditions (PROTA, 2014). 

Climate

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ClimateStatusDescriptionRemark
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 Preferred < 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])

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 12 28

Rainfall

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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Mean annual rainfall3502500mm; lower/upper limits

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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A. uliginosa spreads by seeds. Plants produce numerous small seeds < 2 mm) which can be easy dispersed by wind and water and also as a contaminant in soil, agricultural machinery and crops (Chung et al., 2007; PIER, 2014; PROTA, 2014). 

Impact Summary

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

Environmental Impact

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A. uliginosa grows a weed, and under suitable conditions it has the potential to rapidly colonize disturbed areas. This species represents a conservation concern principally in insular ecosystems in the West Indies and the Pacific islands (i.e., New Caledonia, Fiji, and Micronesia) where it has become invasive (Smith, 1991; MacKee, 1994; Herrera et al., 2010; PIER, 2014). 

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Has a broad native range
  • Abundant in its native range
  • Highly adaptable to different environments
  • Is a habitat generalist
  • Tolerates, or benefits from, cultivation, browsing pressure, mutilation, fire etc
  • Pioneering in disturbed areas
  • Highly mobile locally
  • Benefits from human association (i.e. it is a human commensal)
  • Fast growing
Impact outcomes
  • Modification of successional patterns
  • Monoculture formation
  • Negatively impacts agriculture
  • Reduced native biodiversity
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Rapid growth
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally accidentally
  • Difficult to identify/detect as a commodity contaminant

Uses

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A. uliginosa has been used as a therapeutic herb for its medicinal properties as a pain-reliever (Graveson, 2012; PROTA, 2014). In Benin it is a traditional leafy vegetable which has been domesticated in rural areas (Eteka et al., 2010).

References

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Acevedo-Rodríguez P; Strong MT, 2012. Catalogue of the Seed Plants of the West Indies. Smithsonian Contributions to Botany, 98:1192 pp. Washington DC, USA: Smithsonian Institution. http://botany.si.edu/Antilles/WestIndies/catalog.htm

Broome R; Sabir K; Carrington S, 2007. Plants of the Eastern Caribbean. Online database. Barbados: University of the West Indies. http://ecflora.cavehill.uwi.edu/index.html

Chong KY; Tan HTW; Corlett RT, 2009. A checklist of the total vascular plant flora of Singapore: native, naturalised and cultivated species. A checklist of the total vascular plant flora of Singapore. http://rmbr.nus.edu.sg/raffles_museum_pub/flora_of_singapore_tc.pdf

Chung SW; Hsu TC; Chang YH, 2007. Acmella uliginosa (Swartz) Cassini (Asteraceae): a newly naturalized plant in Taiwan. Taiwania, 52(3):276-279.

Etèka CA; Ahohuendo BC; Ahoton LE; Dabadé SD; Ahanchédé A, 2010. Seeds' germination of four traditional leafy vegetables in Benin (LFT). Tropicultura, 28(3):148-152.

Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2014. Flora of China. St. Louis, Missouri and Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA: Missouri Botanical Garden and Harvard University Herbaria. http://www.efloras.org/flora_page.aspx?flora_id=2

Fosberg FR; Sachet MH; Oliver RL, 1979. A geographical checklist of the Micronesian dicotyledonae. Micronesica, 15:222.

Funk V; Hollowell T; Berry P; Kelloff C; Alexander SN, 2007. Checklist of the plants of the Guiana Shield (Venezuela: Amazonas, Bolivar, Delta Amacuro; Guyana, Surinam, French Guiana). Contributions from the United States National Herbarium, 584 pp.

Graveson R, 2012. The Plants of Saint Lucia (in the Lesser Antilles of the Caribbean). The Plants of Saint Lucia (in the Lesser Antilles of the Caribbean). http://www.saintlucianplants.com

Herrera K; Lorence DH; Flynn T; Balick MJ, 2010. Checklist of the vascular plants of Pohnpei with local names and uses. Allertonia:146 pp.

Jansen RK, 1985. Systematic significance of chromosome numbers in Acmella (Asteraceae). American Journal of Botany, 72:1835-1841.

Jansen RK, 1985. The Systematics of Acmella (Asteraceae-Heliantheae). Systematic Botany Monographs, 8:1-8,20-24,54-58.

MacKee HS, 1994. Catalogue of introduced and cultivated plants in New Caledonia. (Catalogue des plantes introduites et cultivées en Nouvelle-Calédonie.) Paris, France: Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, unpaginated.

Mondin CA; Magenta MAG; Nakajima J; Silva GAR, 2014. Acmella in the list of species of the flora of Brazil. Acmella in Lista de Espécies da Flora do Brasil. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro. http://reflora.jbrj.gov.br/jabot/floradobrasil/FB15915

PIER, 2014. Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk. Honolulu, USA: HEAR, University of Hawaii. http://www.hear.org/pier/index.html

PROTA, 2014. PROTA4U web database. Grubben GJH, Denton OA, eds. Wageningen, Netherlands: Plant Resources of Tropical Africa. http://www.prota4u.org/search.asp

Randall RP, 2012. A Global Compendium of Weeds. Perth, Australia: Department of Agriculture and Food Western Australia, 1124 pp. http://www.cabi.org/isc/FullTextPDF/2013/20133109119.pdf

Smith AC, 1991. Flora Vitiensis nova: A new flora of Fiji. Lawai, Kauai, Hawai`i. National Tropical Botanical Garden, Volume 5, 626 pp.

Stevens PF, 2012. Angiosperm Phylogeny Website. http://www.mobot.org/MOBOT/research/APweb/

Swarbrick JT, 1997. Weeds of the Pacific Islands. Technical paper No. 209. Noumea, New Caledonia: South Pacific Commission.

Tiwari AP; Ansari AA, 2014. New record of angiospermic taxa for Chhattisgarh. Indian Journal of Forestry, 37(1):97-102.

USDA-ARS, 2014. Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Online Database. Beltsville, Maryland, USA: National Germplasm Resources Laboratory. https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxon/taxonomysearch.aspx

Links to Websites

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Contributors

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25/11/14 Original text by:

Julissa Rojas-Sandoval, Department of Botany-Smithsonian NMNH, Washington DC, USA

Pedro Acevedo-Rodríguez, Department of Botany-Smithsonian NMNH, Washington DC, USA

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