Invasive Species Compendium

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Datasheet

Duranta erecta
(golden dewdrop)

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Datasheet

Duranta erecta (golden dewdrop)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 22 November 2019
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Duranta erecta
  • Preferred Common Name
  • golden dewdrop
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Dicotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Duranta erecta is a vine-like, evergreen shrub, native to the Americas. It is widely cultivated as an ornamental and is also used as a hedge plant. The seeds of this species are dispersed naturally by birds tha...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.
TitleHabit
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.
HabitDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.
TitleHabit
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.
HabitDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowering and fruiting habit Pukalani, Maui, Hawaii, USA. April 2009.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers, fruits and foliage. Garden of Eden Keanae, Maui, Hawaii, USA. March 2011.
TitleHabit
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers, fruits and foliage. Garden of Eden Keanae, Maui, Hawaii, USA. March 2011.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers, fruits and foliage. Garden of Eden Keanae, Maui, Hawaii, USA. March 2011.
HabitDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers, fruits and foliage. Garden of Eden Keanae, Maui, Hawaii, USA. March 2011.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers and leaves. Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
TitleFlowers and leaves
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers and leaves. Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers and leaves. Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
Flowers and leavesDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flowers and leaves. Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flower and fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
TitleFlowers and fruits
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flower and fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); flower and fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
Flowers and fruitsDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); flower and fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.
TitleFruiting habit
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.
Fruiting habitDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.
TitleFruiting habit
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.
Fruiting habitDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); fruiting habit. Haiku, Maui, Hawaii, USA. June 2009.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); close view of ripe fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
TitleFruits
CaptionDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); close view of ripe fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
Copyright©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Duranta erecta (pigeonberry); close view of ripe fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.
FruitsDuranta erecta (pigeonberry); close view of ripe fruits. Home Depot Nursery, Kahului, Maui, Hawaii, USA. January 2008.©Forest & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Duranta erecta L.

Preferred Common Name

  • golden dewdrop

Other Scientific Names

  • Duranta angustifolia Salisb.
  • Duranta dentata Pers.
  • Duranta ellisiae Jacq.
  • Duranta inermis L.
  • Duranta integrifolia Tod.
  • Duranta latifolia Salisb.
  • Duranta microphylla Willd.
  • Duranta plumieri Jacq.
  • Duranta racemosa Mill.
  • Duranta repens L.
  • Duranta spinosa Mill.
  • Duranta turbinata Tod.
  • Duranta xalapensis Kunth
  • Ellisia acuta L.

International Common Names

  • English: angels whisper; Brazilian sky flower; duranta; forget-me-not tree; garden dew drop; golden eardrops; golden tears; pigeonberry; skyflower
  • Spanish: cuentas de oro; duranta; flor celeste; San Jacinto; tala blanco
  • French: durante dressée; durante; vanillier de Cayenne; vanillier marron
  • Chinese: jia lian qiao
  • Portuguese: duranta; fruta-de-jacú; pingo-de-ouro; violeteira
  • German: durante; taubenbeere

Local Common Names

  • Brazil: pingo-de-ouro; violeteira-dourada
  • Germany: durante
  • India: kata mehedi
  • Indonesia: sinyo nakal
  • Italy: duranta
  • Japan: deyuranta; harimatsuso; sinyo nakal; taiwan-rengiyô
  • Marshall Islands: jab meloklok
  • Mexico: pojkol che; xcambocoché
  • Philippines: dueanta
  • South Africa: vergeet-my-nie-boom
  • Sweden: duvbär
  • Thailand: thanh yod
  • Tonga: ‘olive; māvaetangi
  • Uganda: ekikomamahanga; kawololo; langwila
  • Vietnam: thanh quan

EPPO code

  • DUTPL (Duranta plumieri)

Summary of Invasiveness

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Duranta erecta is a vine-like, evergreen shrub, native to the Americas. It is widely cultivated as an ornamental and is also used as a hedge plant. The seeds of this species are dispersed naturally by birds that eat the fruits, and accidentally through garden waste disposal by humans and the nursery trade. D. erecta is naturalized in Asia, Africa and Oceania. It is an invasive weed in China, Taiwan, Hawaii, Fiji, French Polynesia, Tonga and Australia. D. erecta is allelopathic and forms dense thickets, displacing native plants and associated organisms. It is reported to invade riparian habitats and scrublands and it is listed as one of the 50 most invasive species in New South Wales and among the top 100 most invasive plants in southeastern Queensland. The leaves and fruits are also poisonous to people and animals and they are reported to have caused the poisoning of domestic cats and dogs.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Dicotyledonae
  •                     Order: Lamiales
  •                         Family: Verbenaceae
  •                             Genus: Duranta
  •                                 Species: Duranta erecta

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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The genus Duranta belongs to the family Verbenaceae and contains approximately 17 species native to the tropical Americas (Munir, 1995). The genus was named after Castore Durante, a sixteenth-century, Italian botanist (Andreu et al., 2010).

Historically, there has been a lot of confusion about the taxonomy of the species D. erecta, which has variously been known as D. erecta, D. plumieri or D. repens (Munir, 1995). D. erecta is now recognized as the accepted name, with D. plumieri and D. repens listed as synonyms (The Plant List, 2018). The common name, golden dewdrop, comes from of the appearance of the golden fruits hanging from the plant (Andreu et al., 2010).

The recognition of a number of varieties (D. erecta var. alba, D. erecta var. domingensis, D. erecta var. erecta and D. erecta var. grandiflora) suggests D. erecta has wide morphological variation (Missouri Botanical Garden, 2018).

Description

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D. erecta is a sprawling or vine-like tender evergreen shrub or small tree, growing up to 7 m tall and spreading to an equal width (Munir, 1995; Floridata, 2015). It typically grows in a clump with multiple branches that droop towards the ground (Floridata, 2015). The bark is light brown and slightly furrowed (Andreu et al., 2010). The stems of mature plants usually have sharp axillary thorns, which are absent in younger plants of this species (Missouri Botanical Garden, 2018). Leaves are ovate, paired, opposite, and between 2.5 and 7.6 cm long (Floridata, 2015). Flowers hang in long racemes (approx. 15 cm) and are small, tubular and range from purple and white to violet or blue (Andreu et al., 2010). The fruit is approximately 7-10 mm in diameter, subglobose or obpyriform and is orange-yellow in colour (Munir, 1995).

The following description is from the Flora of China (Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2013):

Shrubs, often climbing. Branches spiny, pubescent when young. Petiole ca 1 cm, pubescent; leaf blade ovate to lanceolate, 2-6.5 x 1.5-3.5 cm, papery, base cuneate, margin entire to distally crenate, veins 6 pairs. Calyx pubescent on both surfaces. Corolla tube ca 7 mm. Stamens included. Ovary glabrous. Drupes ca 5 mm in diameter, shorter than calyx, shiny, glabrous.

Plant Type

Top of page Broadleaved
Perennial
Seed propagated
Shrub
Vegetatively propagated
Vine / climber
Woody

Distribution

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D. erecta is native to Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America and much of South America (USDA-ARS, 2013). According to USDA-NRCS (2018), it is also native to the states of Arizona, California, Florida, Louisiana and Texas in the USA. However, other records report that it is introduced in Florida and Texas (USDA-ARS, 2013). This species is widely cultivated across the world and, as a result, has become naturalized in parts of Asia, Africa, the Indian Ocean islands of Mayotte and Reunion and much of Oceania (PIER, 2013; USDA-ARS, 2013; Flora of Zambia, 2015; Flora of Zimbabwe, 2015; Hyde et al., 2015; Witt and Luke, 2017). It is reported to be invasive in China, Taiwan, Hawaii (USA), Fiji, French Polynesia, Tonga and Australia (PIER, 2013; Weeds of Australia, 2016).

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

BotswanaPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017)
EthiopiaPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017)
KenyaPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017)
MalawiPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017)
MayottePresentIntroducedNaturalizedUSDA-ARS (2013)Naturalized
MozambiquePresentIntroducedCABI (Undated)Original citation: Hyde et al (2015)
RéunionPresentIntroducedNaturalizedUSDA-ARS (2013)Naturalized
RwandaPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017)
TanzaniaPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017)
UgandaPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017)
ZambiaPresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017); Flora of Zambia (2015)
ZimbabwePresentIntroducedWitt and Luke (2017); Flora of Zimbabwe (2015)

Asia

ChinaPresentIntroducedInvasiveWeeds of Australia (2016); Flora of China Editorial Committee (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)
-FujianPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee (2013)
-GuangdongPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee (2013)
-GuangxiPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee (2013)
-HainanPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee (2013)
-HunanPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee (2013)
-JiangxiPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee (2013)
-ZhejiangPresentIntroducedFlora of China Editorial Committee (2013)
Hong KongPresent, Only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedPIER (2013)
IndiaPresentIntroducedNaturalizedUSDA-ARS (2013)Naturalized
PhilippinesPresent, Only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedPIER (2013)Cultivated for ornamental purposes
SingaporePresent, Only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedChong et al. (2009)
TaiwanPresentIntroducedInvasivePIER (2013); Flora of China Editorial Committee (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)

North America

Antigua and BarbudaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
BahamasPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
BarbadosPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
BelizePresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
BermudaPresentMissouri Botanical Garden (2018)
British Virgin IslandsPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)Virgin Gorda
Cayman IslandsPresentMissouri Botanical Garden (2018)
Costa RicaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
CubaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
Dominican RepublicPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
El SalvadorPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
GuadeloupePresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
GuatemalaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
HaitiPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
HondurasPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
JamaicaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
MartiniquePresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
MexicoPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
MontserratPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
NicaraguaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
PanamaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
Puerto RicoPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
Saint Kitts and NevisPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
Saint LuciaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
U.S. Virgin IslandsPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)St. Croix, St. Thomas
United StatesPresentIntroducedCABI (Undated a)Present based on regional distribution.
-ArizonaPresentNativeUSDA-NRCS (2018)
-CaliforniaPresentNativeUSDA-NRCS (2018)
-FloridaPresentNative and IntroducedUSDA-ARS (2013); USDA-NRCS (2018)Recorded as both native and introduced in this state
-HawaiiPresentIntroducedInvasivePIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Kaua‘i Island, O‘ahu Island
-LouisianaPresentNativeUSDA-NRCS (2018)
-TexasPresentNative and IntroducedUSDA-ARS (2013); USDA-NRCS (2018)Recorded as both native and introduced in this state

Oceania

American SamoaPresentIntroducedPIER (2013)Ta‘u Island, Tutuila Island. Also cultivated
AustraliaPresentIntroducedInvasiveWeeds of Australia (2016); PIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)
-New South WalesPresentIntroducedInvasiveWeeds of Australia (2016)
-QueenslandPresentIntroducedInvasiveWeeds of Australia (2016); PIER (2013)
Cook IslandsPresentIntroducedPIER (2013)Rarotonga Island
Federated States of MicronesiaPresentIntroducedPIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Weno (Moen) Island, Kosrae Island, Pohnpei Island. Also cultivated
FijiPresentIntroducedInvasivePIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Vanua Levu Island, Vanua Mbalavu Island, Viti Levu Island. Also cultivated
French PolynesiaPresentIntroducedInvasivePIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Mangareva (Gambier) Island, Hiva Oa Island, Ua Huka (Huahuna, Uahuka) Island, Moorea Island, Raiatea (Havai) Island, Tahiti Island. Also cultivated
GuamPresentIntroducedPIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Also cultivated
Marshall IslandsPresentIntroducedPIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Kwajalein (Kuwajleen) Atoll, Arno Atoll . Also cultivated
NauruPresentIntroducedPIER (2013)Also cultivated
New CaledoniaPresentIntroducedPIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Île Lifou, Île Grande Terre. Also cultivated
Northern Mariana IslandsPresentIntroducedPIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Aguijan (Agiguan, Aguihan) Island, Rota Island
PalauPresentIntroducedPIER (2013)Angaur (Ngeaur) Island, Babeldaob Island, Koror (Oreor) Island, Malakal (Ngemelachel) Island, Ngercheu Island, Ngerkebesang Island, Peleliu (Beliliou) Island, Sonsorol Island. Also cultivated
Papua New GuineaPresentIntroducedNaturalizedUSDA-ARS (2013)Naturalized
SamoaPresentIntroducedPIER (2013)Savai‘i Island, Upolu Island. Also cultivated
TongaPresentIntroducedInvasivePIER (2013); USDA-ARS (2013)Lifuka and Foa Islands, ‘Eua Island, Tongatapu Island. Also cultivated
VanuatuPresentPIER (2013)
Wallis and FutunaPresentIntroducedPIER (2013)Wallis (‘Uvea) Island. Also cultivated

South America

ArgentinaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)Buenos Aires, Chaco, Entre Rios, Formosa, Misiones, Santa Fe
BoliviaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
BrazilPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
-BahiaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
-Espirito SantoPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
-Minas GeraisPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
-ParaibaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
-Rio de JaneiroPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
-Sao PauloPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
ColombiaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
EcuadorPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
-Galapagos IslandsPresentNativeJaramillo Díaz et al. (2018)
French GuianaPresentMissouri Botanical Garden (2018)
GuyanaPresentMissouri Botanical Garden (2018)
ParaguayPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
PeruPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)Cajamarca, Cuzco, Lambayeque, Lima, Piura, Puno
SurinamePresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)
VenezuelaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS (2013)

Risk of Introduction

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The risk of introduction of D. erecta is high because it is widely cultivated for ornamental use in gardens.

Habitat

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According to Floridata (2015), D. erecta occurs in scrub, open woodlands and disturbed areas. It is also associated with riparian habitats, coastal hills, grasslands, densely forested areas and roadsides (Little et al., 1974; Flora of Zimbabwe, 2015; Weeds of Australia, 2016).

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial
Terrestrial – ManagedManaged grasslands (grazing systems) Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Managed grasslands (grazing systems) 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
Urban / peri-urban areas Present, no further details Productive/non-natural
Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-naturalNatural forests Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Natural forests Present, no further details Natural
Natural grasslands Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Natural grasslands Present, no further details Natural
Riverbanks Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Riverbanks Present, no further details Natural
Scrub / shrublands Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Scrub / shrublands 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

Various chromosome numbers have been reported for D. erecta, ranging from 2n = 16 to 2n = 36 (Munir, 1995).

Reproductive Biology

D. erecta reproduces by seed but can also be propagated by cuttings (Floridata, 2015).

Physiology and Phenology

In Puerto Rico, it flowers and fruits in Northern spring and summer (Little et al., 1974). However, ornamental plants flower and fruit throughout the year, with both flowers and fruit being present on the shrubs at the same time (Nelson, 1996).

Environmental Requirements

D. erecta tolerates acidic to slightly alkaline soils and is moderately salt tolerant (Floridata, 2015). It prefers well drained, fertile soils and partial shade (Floridata, 2015). Annual rainfall is usually between 800 mm and 1800 mm (IPlantz, 2019). In Puerto Rico, it grows from sea level to approximately 120 m (Little et al., 1974). According to Adams (1972), it can grow up to approximately 1600 m above sea level. However, specimens collected from Dominican Republic have been recorded at elevations of 3600 m (Missouri Botanical Garden, 2018).

Climate

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ClimateStatusDescriptionRemark
A - Tropical/Megathermal climate Preferred Average temp. of coolest month > 18°C, > 1500mm precipitation annually
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 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])

Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
0 3600

Rainfall

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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Mean annual rainfall8001800mm; lower/upper limits

Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • free

Soil reaction

  • acid
  • alkaline
  • neutral

Special soil tolerances

  • saline

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Natural Dispersal

The seeds are most commonly dispersed by birds that eat the brightly coloured fruit (Weeds of Australia, 2016).

Accidental Introduction

D. erecta can be spread via dumped garden waste (Weeds of Australia, 2016).

Intentional Introduction

It is deliberately introduced into new areas as an ornamental plant.

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Garden waste disposal Yes Weeds of Australia, 2016
Landscape improvement Yes Yes
Nursery trade Yes Yes
Ornamental purposes Yes Yes

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Debris and waste associated with human activitiesSpreads via dumped garden waste Yes Yes Weeds of Australia, 2016

Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Cultural/amenity Positive
Environment (generally) Negative
Human health Negative

Environmental Impact

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D. erecta is a weed that is reported to invade riparian habitats and scrublands, causing changes to natural ecosystems (Weeds of Australia, 2016). It also allelopathic and forms dense thickets, displacing native plants and associated organisms (Witt and Luke, 2017). Thickets also restrict access to land and are reported to limit the productivity of managed grasslands (Weeds of Australia, 2016). In Australia it was listed as one of the 50 most invasive species in an environmental weed survey in New South Wales and one of the 100 most invasive plants in southeastern Queensland (Weeds of Australia, 2016).

Social Impact

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The leaves and fruits of D. erecta are poisonous to both people and animals (Weeds of Australia, 2016). They are reported to have caused poisoning in a number of domestic animals including dogs and cats (Scanlan et al., 2006).

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
  • Tolerant of shade
  • Reproduces asexually
Impact outcomes
  • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
  • Modification of successional patterns
  • Monoculture formation
  • Negatively impacts human health
  • Negatively impacts animal health
  • Reduced native biodiversity
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Allelopathic
  • Competition - shading
  • Competition - smothering
  • Poisoning
  • Produces spines, thorns or burrs
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately

Uses

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D. erecta is cultivated as an ornamental and as a plant used in hedges and windbreaks (Floridata, 2015). It also has medicinal uses in China (Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2013).

Uses List

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Environmental

  • Amenity
  • Landscape improvement
  • Windbreak

Medicinal, pharmaceutical

  • Traditional/folklore

Ornamental

  • garden plant

Prevention and Control

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Due to the variable regulations around (de)registration of pesticides, your national list of registered pesticides or relevant authority should be consulted to determine which products are legally allowed for use in your country when considering chemical control. Pesticides should always be used in a lawful manner, consistent with the product's label.

Prevention

A Weed Risk Assessment was carried out for D. erecta in the Hawaii-Pacific region, resulting in a score of 13 (HPWRA, 2003). This high score suggests that the species presents a high risk and is likely to be an invasive plant. This information can be used in decision making with regard to importation and planting of the species outside its native range.

Control

In Australia, recommendations for control outlined by the Queensland Government (DAF, 2016) include:

  • Hand pulling of smaller plants, ensuring all the roots are fully removed.
  • Treating cut stumps immediately with an appropriate herbicide to prevent regrowth.
  • Limiting seed set until invaded sites can be treated with herbicides.
  • Ongoing monitoring of treated sites to detect any regrowth or seedlings.

Herbicides for the control of D. erecta include metsulfuron-methyl, 2,4-D + picloram and fluroxypyr (for spot spraying) and triclopyr + picloram and fluroxpyr (for basal bark or cut stumps) (DAF, 2016).

References

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Adams, C. D., 1972. Flowering plants of Jamaica, Mona, Jamaica: University of the West Indies.848 pp.

Andreu MG, Friedman MH, McKenzie M, Quintana HV, Northrop RJ, 2010. Duranta erecta, Golden Dewdrop. Florida, USA: IFAS Extension, University of Florida.https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/FR/FR32700.pdf

Chong KY, Tan HTW, Corlett RT, 2009. A checklist of the total vascular plant flora of Singapore: native, naturalised and cultivated species. Singapore: Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, National University of Singapore.273 pp. https://lkcnhm.nus.edu.sg/app/uploads/2017/04/flora_of_singapore_tc.pdf

DAF, 2016. Duranta (Duranta erecta). Queensland, Australia: Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Queensland Government.https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/74924/IPA-Duranta-PP123.pdf

Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2013. 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

Flora of Zambia, 2015. Flora of Zambia. https://www.zambiaflora.com/

Flora of Zimbabwe, 2015. Flora of Zimbabwe. http://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/

Floridata, 2015. Floridata. https://floridata.com/home

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Distribution References

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Witt A, Luke Q, 2017. Guide to the naturalized and invasive plants of Eastern Africa. [ed. by Witt A, Luke Q]. Wallingford, UK: CABI. vi + 601 pp. http://www.cabi.org/cabebooks/ebook/20173158959 DOI:10.1079/9781786392145.0000

Contributors

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20/04/15 Original text by:

Esther Arengo, National Agricultural Research Laboratories, Kampala, Uganda

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