Invasive Species Compendium

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Datasheet

Albizia chinensis
(Chinese albizia)

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Datasheet

Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 21 November 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Albizia chinensis
  • Preferred Common Name
  • Chinese albizia
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Dicotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • A. chinensis is a large, multipurpose tree up to 30 m tall and 1 m diameter. It has a very wide native distribution including India, China and Southeast Asia, and is cultivated in many other tropical countries....

  • Principal Source
  • Draft datasheet under review

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
TitleHabit
CaptionAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
Copyright©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
HabitAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing foliage. Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka, India. February 2017.
TitleHabit
CaptionAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing foliage. Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka, India. February 2017.
Copyright©Dinesh Valke/via flickr - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing foliage. Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka, India. February 2017.
HabitAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing foliage. Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka, India. February 2017.©Dinesh Valke/via flickr - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing flowers and foliage. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
TitleHabit
CaptionAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing flowers and foliage. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
Copyright©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing flowers and foliage. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
HabitAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); habit, showing flowers and foliage. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); flower. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
TitleFlower
CaptionAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); flower. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
Copyright©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); flower. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.
FlowerAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia); flower. nr. Bavda, Karnataka India. May 2012.©Dinesh Valke/via wikipedia - CC BY-SA 2.0
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia) 1. habit. 2. leafy branch. 3. central flower. 4. marginal flower. 5. pod
TitleMorphology
CaptionAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia) 1. habit. 2. leafy branch. 3. central flower. 4. marginal flower. 5. pod
Copyright©PROSEA Foundation
Albizia chinensis (Chinese albizia) 1. habit. 2. leafy branch. 3. central flower. 4. marginal flower. 5. pod
MorphologyAlbizia chinensis (Chinese albizia) 1. habit. 2. leafy branch. 3. central flower. 4. marginal flower. 5. pod©PROSEA Foundation

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Albizia chinensis (Osbeck) Merr.

Preferred Common Name

  • Chinese albizia

Other Scientific Names

  • Acacia stipulacea Roxb.
  • Acacia stipulata DC.
  • Albizia marginata (Lam.) Merr.
  • Albizia stipulata (DC.) Boivin
  • Inga purpurascens Hassk.
  • Mimosa chinensis Osbeck
  • Mimosa marginata Lam.
  • Mimosa stipulacea Roxb.
  • Pithecellobium serronii Glaz.

International Common Names

  • English: sau tree; sauce tree; silk tree; siris
  • French: albizia de Chine

Local Common Names

  • Australia: chocolate heart albizia
  • Cambodia: ko: i
  • China: ying shu
  • India: amulkia; bikumbh; chakua; godhunchi; kali siris; kasir; koroi; motta vagai; nirusil; ohi; pottu vaga; saris; sau; silai vagai; siran; tarli
  • Indonesia: jeungjng; sengghung; sengon
  • Laos: kha:ng; kha:ng hu
  • Madagascar: albizi; bonara vazaha
  • Nepal: kalo siris; rato siris
  • Philippines: hinagit; kantingen; unik
  • Samoa: tamaligi; tamaligi uliuli; tamalini
  • Thailand: kaang juang; kham hung cham; saan khan
  • Vietnam: soos ng rawsn tafu chu mef

EPPO code

  • ALBCH (Albizia chinensis)

Summary of Invasiveness

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A. chinensis is a large, multipurpose tree up to 30 m tall and 1 m diameter. It has a very wide native distribution including India, China and Southeast Asia, and is cultivated in many other tropical countries. Due its fast growth and prolific seed production it can become an aggressive colonizer. Seeds retain their viability for up to five years, although they are prone to bruchid attack. It is a common weed in its native range in Indonesia, and has proved invasive where introduced in the Pacific, especially in Hawaii and Samoa, as well as in Mayotte in the Indian Ocean. As it is also present in many other countries, and other Albizia species are invasive, there is a high risk that A. chinensis could also become an invasive species elsewhere in the future.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Dicotyledonae
  •                     Order: Fabales
  •                         Family: Fabaceae
  •                             Subfamily: Mimosoideae
  •                                 Genus: Albizia
  •                                     Species: Albizia chinensis

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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A. chinensis is a mimosoid legume in the Ingeae tribe. A variety is described from India, A. chinensis var. smithiana (Roxb.) K.C. Sahni, S. Chawla & S.S.R. Bennet (Sahni et al., 1977), which is accepted in the Plant List (2013). Further molecular work on the taxonomy of A. chinensis has been undertaken and further clarification of the genetic relationships between closely related species is likely (Aparajita et al., 2008). 

Description

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From ICRAF (2014) and PIER (2014):

A. chinensis trees are commonly 20 m tall, sometimes to 30 and exceptionally to 40 m or more, with trunk diameters up to 70 cm, though 140 cm diameter trees are reported. It is sometimes erect when in dense stands, but is generally multistemmed with a flat, spreading crown. The bark is dark grey, quite smooth and thin but densely hooped and lenticellate.

Trees are unarmed, deciduous or evergreen depending on site and climatic conditions. Branchlets are slightly angular in the distal parts, terete, puberulous to tomentose, glabrescent.

Leaves are bipinnate with 4-14(-20) pairs of pinnae and (10-)20-30(-45) pairs of leaflets per pinna, 10-25 cm long. Leaflets are puberulous to tomentose, asymmetrical with the midrib strongly eccentric near one of the margins, 6-10 mm long, 2-3 mm wide, apex sharply acute, base obtuse, oblique, midrib close to the upper margin, sparsely sericeous or glabrous on either side. There are elliptical, raised nectar glands on the rachis just below each pair of pinnae, 2-3 mm x 1-1.5 mm, though glands are sometimes absent, and stipules up to 1.5 cm long and 3 cm wide.

Flowers 8-12 mm long (central one larger), in heads 20-25 mm in diameter (excluding stamens). These are usually in wide terminal panicles, sometimes reduced to 3-4 peduncles clustered in the leaf axils. Glomerule composed of 10-20 flowers, flowers pentamerous and dimorphic; the central flower is male, the marginal flowers are bisexual. The calyx is tubular to narrowly funnel-shaped, 2.5-5 mm long, tomentose to hirsute, ending in small triangular teeth, with white funnel-shaped corolla, 6-10 mm long and numerous stamens up to 30 mm long.

The indehiscent pods are a glossy reddish or yellowish-brown, flat and thin, (6-)10-17(-20) cm long and 1.7-3.5 cm wide, often with slightly sinuate margins, each containing 8-12 seeds. Seeds are dark brown, ellipsoid, laterally flattened, 7-10 mm long and 4-6 in diameter, distinctly median (remote from sutures), with a small basal pleurogram about 1 mm in diameter. There are 50,000 seeds/kg.

 

Plant Type

Top of page Broadleaved
Perennial
Seed propagated
Tree
Woody

Distribution

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A. chinensis is native to a wide area including South Asia, East and South-East Asia (USDA-ARS, 2014). It is native to much of India, especially in the foothill of the Himalayas, Nepal and Bhutan, but also throughout South-East Asia including Indonesia, and in parts of China. It is also cultivate in many parts of its native range (USDA-ARS, 2014).

It has been introduced to a number of African countries, though is only reported from southern Brazil in South America and a few Caribbean islands and some Pacific islands (PIER, 2014).

As a tropical and frost-sensitive species, reports in GBIF (2014) for the Netherlands, Spain and Syria are questioned, though are not entirely implausible, especially in sheltered or protected situations.

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 ReportedInvasivePlantedReferenceNotes

Asia

BangladeshPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
BhutanPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
Brunei DarussalamPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
CambodiaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
ChinaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalPIER, 2014; USDA-ARS, 2014
-FujianPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-GuangdongPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-GuangxiPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-HainanPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Hong KongPresentNative Not invasive Planted, NaturalPIER, 2014
-HunanPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-SichuanPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-XinjiangPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-YunnanPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-ZhejiangPresentNativePlanted, NaturalMissouri Botanical Garden, 2014
East TimorPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
IndiaWidespreadNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Andaman and Nicobar IslandsPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Andhra PradeshPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Arunachal PradeshPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-AssamPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-BiharPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-DelhiPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-GoaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-HaryanaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Himachal PradeshPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Indian PunjabPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Jammu and KashmirPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-KarnatakaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-KeralaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-MaharashtraPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-ManipurPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-MeghalayaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-MizoramPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-NagalandPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-OdishaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-SikkimPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Tamil NaduPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-TripuraPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-Uttar PradeshPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-UttarakhandPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-West BengalPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
IndonesiaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
-JavaPresentNative Planted USDA-ARS, 2014
-KalimantanPresentNative Planted USDA-ARS, 2014
-Nusa TenggaraPresentNative Planted USDA-ARS, 2014
-SumatraPresent Planted ILDIS, 2014; USDA-ARS, 2014
LaosPresentNative Natural USDA-ARS, 2014
MalaysiaPresentNative Natural USDA-ARS, 2014
-SabahPresentNative Natural USDA-ARS, 2014
-SarawakPresentNative Natural USDA-ARS, 2014
MyanmarPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
NepalPresentNative Natural USDA-ARS, 2014
PakistanPresentNative Planted USDA-ARS, 2014
PhilippinesPresentNative Planted USDA-ARS, 2014
SingaporePresentIntroduced Not invasive Planted, NaturalPIER, 2014
Sri LankaPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
ThailandPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014
VietnamPresentNativePlanted, NaturalUSDA-ARS, 2014

Africa

BurundiPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2014
CameroonPresentIntroduced Planted GBIF, 2014
ComorosPresentIntroduced Planted GBIF, 2014
Congo Democratic RepublicPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2014
EgyptPresentIntroduced Planted GBIF, 2014
EthiopiaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2014
GambiaPresentIntroduced Planted GBIF, 2014
KenyaPresentIntroducedGhaly et al., 2010
MadagascarPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2014; Missouri Botanical Garden, 2014
MauritiusPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014
MayottePresentIntroduced Invasive Planted PIER, 2014
South AfricaPresentIntroduced Planted GBIF, 2014
TanzaniaPresentIntroduced Planted GBIF, 2014
TogoPresentIntroduced Planted GBIF, 2014
UgandaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2014
ZimbabwePresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2014

North America

USAPresentIntroducedPresent based on regional distribution.
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted, NaturalPIER, 2014; USDA-NRCS, 2014

Central America and Caribbean

GuadeloupePresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014
HondurasPresentIntroduced Planted Missouri Botanical Garden, 2014
Puerto RicoPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014
Trinidad and TobagoPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014

South America

BrazilPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014
-Rio de JaneiroPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014

Oceania

AustraliaPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroduced Planted Gutteridge, 1990
-QueenslandPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroduced Planted Gutteridge, 1990 In productivity trials
French PolynesiaPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014
New CaledoniaPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2014
Papua New GuineaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2014
SamoaPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted Space and Flynn, 2002; PIER, 2014

Risk of Introduction

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An Australian/New Zealand Weed Risk Assessment adapted for Hawaii gave A. chinensis had a high risk score for invasiveness of 8 (PIER, 2014). 

Habitat

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A. chinensis has been intentionally introduced internationally as a potentially useful tree for agroforestry, fodder and soil improvement. 

Information is lacking regarding local movement and dispersal. The large seeds and dry pods are not conducive to dispersal by animals, though livestock could possibly browse and ingest the seeds. They could also be spread by flood waters and along coast lines.

 

 

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial
 
Terrestrial – ManagedDisturbed 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)
Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-naturalNatural forests Present, no further details Natural
Natural grasslands Present, no further details Natural
Riverbanks Present, no further details Natural
Scrub / shrublands Present, no further details Natural
Littoral
Coastal areas Present, no further details Natural

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics

A. chinensis is reported to have a chromosome number of 2n = 26 (Majumdar et al., 2000).

Reproductive Biology

In its native range, flowering and fruit varies depending on the prevailing climate, though pods can remain on the tree for at least several months. In Southeast Asia, A. chinensis flowers between September and June, with fruits ripening between October and August. In northern India, flowering begins in March and April, with pods ripening from December to March. The tree is generally evergreen, or may be leafless for a short period such as in northern India during the winter (ICRAF, 2014).

Seed storage is orthodox and it the plant reproduces entirely by seed in nature, although in cultivation, vegetative propagation by stump plants and tissue culture has proved possible. There are 50, 000 seeds/kg(, and dormancy is broken by various pre-treatments when raised in nurseries.

Physiology and Phenology

A. chinensis is a nitrogen-fixing tree that regenerates rapidly when cut or otherwise damaged. It is only slightly tolerant of drought and frost. The tree is mostly propagated by seed. Dormancy can be broken by scarification or soaking seed in concentrated sulfuric acid for 10 minutes, followed by washing and soaking in water for 18 hours. After 6-8 weeks, the seedlings can be transplanted into the field (ICRAF, 2014).

Environmental Requirements

A. chinensis is a tree with a broad native range, including the humid tropics in Southeast Asia, to more sub-humid regions in South and East Asia, and regions with a cool winter in northern India and neighbouring Himalayan countries (USDA-ARS, 2014). The mean annual rainfall in its native range varies from 1000 mm to 5000 mm, though it is sensitive to dry periods lasting more than a few months, and is also sensitive to anything more than the lightest of frosts. It grows from seas level to altitudes of 2400 m, though it is possible that it occurs at higher elevations (Missouri Botanical Garden, 2014). 

A. chinensis prefers moist, well-drained sites and thrives on lateritic alluvial soil, but is also tolerant to of poor, saline and alkaline soils and will grow in sandy soils and mine spoils (ICRAF, 2014).

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])
C - Temperate/Mesothermal climate Preferred Average temp. of coldest month > 0°C and < 18°C, mean warmest month > 10°C
Cs - Warm temperate climate with dry summer Tolerated 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)
28 -10 0 2400

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Absolute minimum temperature (ºC) -1
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 16 32
Mean maximum temperature of hottest month (ºC) 29 43
Mean minimum temperature of coldest month (ºC) 6 13

Rainfall

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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Dry season duration46number of consecutive months with <40 mm rainfall
Mean annual rainfall11005000mm; lower/upper limits

Rainfall Regime

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Summer

Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • free
  • impeded

Soil reaction

  • neutral

Soil texture

  • light
  • medium

Special soil tolerances

  • infertile
  • shallow

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Cephalosporium Pathogen not specific
Endoclita signifer Herbivore not specific
Eurema hecabe Herbivore not specific
Fusarium oxysporum Pathogen not specific
Ganoderma lucidum Pathogen not specific
Indarbela quadrinotata Herbivore not specific
Oxyrachis tarandus Herbivore not specific
Ravenelia sessilis Pathogen not specific
Xystrocera globosa Herbivore not specific

Notes on Natural Enemies

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No serious diseases have been reported on A. chinensis, though many trees were killed by a canker in northeast India in the 1940s, which reduced longevity there to about 20 years (ICRAF, 2014). Infestation by thrips is reported to prevent flower opening, and young pods can be damaged by beetles and larvae of various bruchid beetles (ICRAF, 2014). The rust Ravenelia sessilis is a known pathogen (Cannon, 2008) that can cause significant damage in young seedlings in tree nurseries (Khan et al., 1993). Cephalosporium sp. is also reported to cause stem necrosis (Khan and Misra, 2000).

Other pests recorded include Endoclita signifer, Eurema hecabe (Sharma, 2006), the stem rot Ganoderma lucidum and Oxyrachis tarandus. The fungus Fusarium oxysporum is also a serious pathogen, and the insects Xystrocera globosa and Indarbela quadrinotata bore into living trees.

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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A. chinensis has been intentionally introduced internationally as a potentially useful tree for agroforestry, fodder and soil improvement. It is likely that it may be further introduced.

Information is lacking regarding local movement and dispersal. The large seeds and dry pods are not conducive to dispersal by animals, though livestock could possibly browse and ingest the seeds. They could also be spread by flood waters and along coast lines.

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Digestion and excretion Yes
Forage Yes Yes
Forestry Yes Yes
Nursery trade Yes
Ornamental purposes Yes
Research Yes

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Water Yes

Environmental Impact

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A. chinensis is recorded as invasive in Hawaii, Samoa and Mayotte, but there is little information available regarding details of the specific environmental impacts. However, impacts are likely to be similar to those of other invasive Albizia species, in crowding out native species and monopolizing resources.

Speith and Harrison (2012) reported that A. chinensis can form single species stands that shade out all competition, and can alter the structure and composition of native ecosystems, thereby potentially facilitating further invasion by other invasive species. A. chinensis ‘is fast-growing and can displace vegetation preferred by threatened native birds, such as the purple-capped fruit dove (Ptilinopus porphyraceus) and the Pacific imperial pigeon (Ducula pacifica). Young leaves contain saponin and may be toxic to animals’ (Speith and Harrison, 2012).

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Invasive in its native range
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Has a broad native range
  • Highly adaptable to different environments
  • Tolerates, or benefits from, cultivation, browsing pressure, mutilation, fire etc
  • Pioneering in disturbed areas
  • Long lived
  • Fast growing
  • Has high reproductive potential
  • 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
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition - shading
  • Rapid growth
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately

Uses

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A. chinensis wood is lightweight, soft and non-durable, with light to dark brown heartwood and white sapwood. The wood is, however, resistant to termite and other insects attack, and is use in making canoes (Santhakumaranand Rao, 1995), packing-cases, boxes, planking, small turnery articles, and for construction and light furniture, tea chests, veneers. Good quality paper can be produced from A. chinensis pulp with the addition of other long fibred pulp. The wood is a poor fuel. The density of stem and bark is reported by Sagwal and Gupta (1987).

A. chinensis leaves have potential as fodder, as leaves are readily eaten by goats (Ahn et al., 1989). The foliage contains 21-28% crude protein and the chemical content has been assessment (Liu et al., 2009). Where grown for fodder, trees are grown in hedges or in dense stands with spacings of 3 m x 1 m or less. The trees can be harvested for fodder twice a year during the growing season by cutting the stem back to 1 m, and they tolerate frequent pruning (ICRAF, 2014).

A  low quality gum is extracted from the bark, which has been mixed with other gums and used as an extender for sizing paper. The bark contains triterpenes which have spermicidal activity (Rawat et al., 1989). An extract of the wood has can act as a repellent to subterranean termites (ICRAF, 2014).

A. chinensis is widely used in agroforestry systems in Himchal Pradesh, India (Naresh Kumar et al., 2010) and elsewhere in northern India, including as a shade tree in tea (Camellia sinensis) plantations in north-eastern India (Barua and Sarma, 1982; Saini et al., 2003) and in pineapple agroforestry in Bangladesh (Khaleque and Gold, 1993); it is also intercropped in China (ICRAF, 2014). A. chinensis has also been evaluated for agronomy in Australia (Gutteridge, 1990). When grown in tea plantations in India as a shade tree in agroforestry systems, A. chinensis is planted at spacings of between 7 m and 15 m apart. Trees grown for shade are left to grow to 7 m tall and then cut back to 4 m (ICRAF, 2014).

A. chinensis is also planted for slope stabilization, as a fast growing tree legume, and has proved valuable for the reforestation and improvement of degraded land. It is also planted as an ornamental tree in parks, gardens and along roads.

 

Uses List

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Animal feed, fodder, forage

  • Fodder/animal feed
  • Forage

Environmental

  • Agroforestry
  • Amenity
  • Erosion control or dune stabilization
  • Land reclamation
  • Ornamental
  • Revegetation
  • Soil conservation
  • Soil improvement

Human food and beverage

  • Honey/honey flora

Materials

  • Wood/timber

Wood Products

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Boats

Containers

  • Boxes
  • Cases
  • Crates

Furniture

Pulp

  • Short-fibre pulp

Sawn or hewn building timbers

  • Carpentry/joinery (exterior/interior)

Veneers

Wood extractives (including oil)

Woodware

  • Cutlery
  • Industrial and domestic woodware
  • Turnery

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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A. chinensis can be confused with the A. lebbek and A. julibrissin, two other commonly introduced and morphologically similar Albizia species. A. lebbek is the most widespread species and is especially common in tropical sub-humid and semi-arid climates, whereas A. julibrissin is more prevalent in sub-tropical climates. A. chinensis  is also similar to another invasive tree Falcataria moluccana, also called ‘albizia’ in some countries. F. moluccana can be differentiated by its lighter-coloured bark and its stamens, which are only 10-15 mm long, about half the length of those in A. chinensis. 

Prevention and Control

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In Samoa, a practice reportedly developed by local farmers is to cut A. chinensis and converted invaded bush fallow to 1 m height, plant various species of grass, and then manage the regrowth as a shrub legume/grass pasture, as it tolerates regular cutting (Lee, 2009).

No other methods of control have been identified, though it might be assumed that those that have proved effective for the related A. julibrissin could also be attempted for A. chinensis.

 

References

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Ahmed N, Bezbaruah HP, Singh ID, 1993. Germination and storage of shade tree seeds. Two and a Bud, 40(2):34-37

Ahn JH, Robertson BM, Elliott R, Gutteridge RC, Ford CW, 1989. Quality assessment of tropical browse legumes: tannin content and protein degradation. Animal Feed Science and Technology, 27(1-2):147-156; 25 ref

Aparajita S, Senapati SK, Rout GR, 2008. Identification and genetic relationships among nine Albizzia species based on morphological and molecular markers. Plant Biosystems, 142(1):30-39

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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.

Principal Source

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Draft datasheet under review

Contributors

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28/02/14 updated by:

Nick Pasiecznik, consultant, France

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