Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Datasheet

Annona glabra
(pond apple)

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Datasheet

Annona glabra (pond apple)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 06 November 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Annona glabra
  • Preferred Common Name
  • pond apple
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Dicotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • A. glabra was introduced from its native tropical America and West Africa as a potential crop and rootstock for commercial Annona species. It has proved invasive mostly in and around the Pacific, and is an...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Annona glabra (pond apple); habit on margin of wetland at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009
TitleHabit
CaptionAnnona glabra (pond apple); habit on margin of wetland at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); habit on margin of wetland at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009
HabitAnnona glabra (pond apple); habit on margin of wetland at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); trunk at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009.
TitleTrunk and leaves
CaptionAnnona glabra (pond apple); trunk at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009.
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); trunk at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009.
Trunk and leavesAnnona glabra (pond apple); trunk at Green Cay Wetlands, Florida. September 25, 2009.©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); habit at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009
TitleHabit and leaves
CaptionAnnona glabra (pond apple); habit at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); habit at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009
Habit and leavesAnnona glabra (pond apple); habit at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); leaves at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009
TitleLeaves
CaptionAnnona glabra (pond apple); leaves at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); leaves at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009
LeavesAnnona glabra (pond apple); leaves at Green Cay Wetlands Boynton Beach, Florida. September 25, 2009©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); fruit at Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, Florida. September 26, 2009
TitleFruit
CaptionAnnona glabra (pond apple); fruit at Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, Florida. September 26, 2009
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Annona glabra (pond apple); fruit at Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, Florida. September 26, 2009
FruitAnnona glabra (pond apple); fruit at Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, Florida. September 26, 2009©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Annona glabra L., 1753

Preferred Common Name

  • pond apple

Other Scientific Names

  • Annona palustris L., 1762

International Common Names

  • English: alligator apple; corkwood; mangrove anona; monkey apple
  • Spanish: anon de puerco; anon liso; anona lisa; anonillo cabuye; anono de pantano (Mexico); bagá; cayur; chirimoya cimarrona; corcho; cortisso; palo bobo
  • French: annone des marais; bois flot; cachiman chochon; cachiman cochon; corossol des marais; corossolier des marais; guanamin; mamain; none des marais

Local Common Names

  • Brazil: araticu-do-Brejo; araticum de rio; araticum do bréjo; araticurana
  • Fiji: kaitambo; kaitambu; uto ni bulumakau; uto ni mbulumakau
  • Germany: alligatorapfel; Alligator-Birnbaum; Annone, Alligator-; Annone, Mangroven-; wasserapfel
  • Netherlands: zuurzak, moeras-

EPPO code

  • ANUGL (Annona glabra)
  • ANUPA (Annona palustris)

Summary of Invasiveness

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A. glabra was introduced from its native tropical America and West Africa as a potential crop and rootstock for commercial Annona species. It has proved invasive mostly in and around the Pacific, and is an important wetland weed that also threatens mangroves, but unlike most pioneer species it also invades relatively undisturbed areas. It has proved to be one of the worst weeds in Australia. All of the four commercially cultivated species, Annona cheromola (cherimoya), Annona muricata (soursop), Annona reticulata (custard apple or bullock’s heart) and Annona squamosa (sugar apple) are also reported as invasive, though less so than A. glabra.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Dicotyledonae
  •                     Order: Annonales
  •                         Family: Annonaceae
  •                             Genus: Annona
  •                                 Species: Annona glabra

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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The genus Annona is thought to contain over 100 species, all shrubs or small trees, most native to the American tropics, and a few native to tropical Africa. Annona glabra is a wild species related to several commercially grown Annona species, including Annona cheromola (cherimoya), Annona muricata (soursop), Annona reticulata (custard apple or bullock’s heart) and Annona squamosa (sugar apple). However, caution should be used when dealing with common names, and many are liberally or inconsistently used between the species above.

Description

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A. glabra is semi-deciduous tree, usually 3-8 m in height, but up to 12-15 m tall. Usually a single bole, with a swollen base when young or narrowly buttressed when mature. Stems grey with prominent lenticels. Leaves alternate, 7-12 cm long, and up to 6 cm broad, oblong-elliptical, acute or shortly acuminate, light- to dark-green above and paler below, with a prominent midrib and a distinctive small fold where the leaf blade joins the leaf stalk. Flowers are short-lived and rarely noticed, 2-3 cm in diameter, pale-yellow to cream with three leathery outer petals and three smaller inner petals, pedicel curved, expanded distally; sepals 4.5 mm long, 9 mm broad, apiculate; outer petals valvate, ovate-cordate, cream-coloured with a crimson spot at base within, 2.5-3.0 cm long, 2.0-2.5 cm broad; inner petals subimbricate, shortly clawed, 2.0-2.5 cm long and 1.5-1.7 cm broad, whitish outside, bright-red to dark-crimson within; stigmas sticky, deciduous. Fruit is green turning yellow or orange when ripe, spherical or elongated, 5-15 cm in diameter, looking like a smooth-skinned custard apple, pulp pinkish-orange, rather dry, pungent-aromatic, containing 100–200 light-brown seeds, each 1.5 cm long, 1 cm broad (adapted from Land Protection, 2005 and PIER, 2008).

Plant Type

Top of page Broadleaved
Perennial
Seed propagated
Shrub
Tree
Woody

Distribution

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The native range of A. glabra is broad and includes tropical wetlands in both the Americas and coastal West Africa.


There are unconfirmed reports from India, China, and California and Arizona, USA, and it is highly likely to be much more widespread than indicated, especially in South and South-East Asia, and it may possibly be already present in Indian Ocean islands.

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

ChinaLocalisedIntroduced Not invasive Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2007
-GuangdongPresentIntroduced Not invasive Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2007
-GuangxiPresentIntroduced Not invasive Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2007
-YunnanPresentIntroduced Not invasive Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2007
-ZhejiangPresentIntroduced Not invasive Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2007
Sri LankaPresentIntroduced Invasive Bambaradeniya et al., 2002
TaiwanPresentIntroduced Not invasive Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2007
VietnamPresentIntroduced Invasive Trinh Thuong Mai, 1995; PIER, 2008A weed

Africa

CameroonPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
Côte d'IvoirePresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
GabonPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
GambiaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
GuineaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
LiberiaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
MadagascarPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2008
NigeriaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
Sao Tome and PrincipePresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
SenegalPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
Sierra LeonePresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008

North America

MexicoPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
USAPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-FloridaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008; USDA-NRCS, 2008
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced Not invasive PIER, 2008

Central America and Caribbean

Antigua and BarbudaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
BahamasPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
BelizePresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
Costa RicaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
CubaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
DominicaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
Dominican RepublicPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
GrenadaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
GuadeloupePresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
GuatemalaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
HaitiPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
HondurasPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
JamaicaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
MartiniquePresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
MontserratPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
NicaraguaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
PanamaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
Puerto RicoPresentNative Not invasive USDA-NRCS, 2008
Saint LuciaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
United States Virgin IslandsPresentNative Not invasive USDA-NRCS, 2008

South America

BrazilPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
ColombiaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
EcuadorPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
-Galapagos IslandsPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2008Probably exotic
French GuianaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
GuyanaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
SurinamePresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008
VenezuelaPresentNative Not invasive USDA-ARS, 2008

Oceania

AustraliaLocalisedIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2008
-QueenslandPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2008
Cook IslandsPresentIntroduced Not invasive PIER, 2008
FijiPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2008
French PolynesiaPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2008
Micronesia, Federated states ofPresentIntroduced Not invasive PIER, 2008
New CaledoniaPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2008
NiuePresentIntroduced Not invasive PIER, 2008
Papua New GuineaPresentIntroduced Not invasive PIER, 2008
Solomon IslandsPresentIntroduced Not invasive PIER, 2008

History of Introduction and Spread

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A. glabra was introduced to Queensland, Australia in 1912 (Land Protection, 2005), and is present on a number of Pacific islands, as well as being weedy in Vietnam (Holm et al., 1979) and Sri Lanka (Bambaradeniya et al., 2002), though dates of introduction are not known. Natural or human disturbance plays an important role in encouraging invasion. Floods or cyclones create canopy gaps thus letting in light, or excessive draining of coastal land during land reclamation raises saline water tables, which kills native Melaleuca spp. and leaves gaps for A. glabra to establish (Anonymous, 2003).

Risk of Introduction

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A. glabra is a declared class 2 weed in Queensland, Australia and a Weed of National Significance (Land Protection, 2005). All of the four commercially cultivated species, Annona cheromola (cherimoya), Annona muricata (soursop), Annona reticulata (custard apple or bullock’s heart) and Annona squamosa (sugar apple) are reported as invasive in at least one island group in the Pacific, although they have low scores in weed risk assessments (PIER, 2008). A. glabra may be introduced as a potential crop and/or as a rootstock for commercial Annona species.

Habitat

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A. glabra is found in freshwater and brackish wetlands in its native range, particularly in swamps. It used to be widespread in the Florida Everglades as a native species, but due to changes in land use it is now much less common and it is never found in dense, monotypic stands as it is where invasive in Australia (Ervin, 2007). Where invasive in Queensland, Australia, it is also found in saltwater areas, particularly mangroves, also Melaleuca woodlands, rainforest areas, riparian areas, creeks, riverbanks, floodplains, sedge lands, agricultural drainage systems, beaches, coastal dunes and islands (Anonymous, 2003; Land Protection, 2005). It is also recorded as dominant on shrub-lands as well as stream-banks in Sri Lanka (Bambaradeniya et al., 2002). It does not thrive in areas that are permanently flooded, or on sites that are too sandy (Anon., 2003).

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Brackish
Inland saline areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Inland saline areas Present, no further details Natural
Lagoons Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Lagoons Present, no further details Natural
Terrestrial
 
Terrestrial – ManagedCultivated / agricultural land Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Disturbed areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-naturalRiverbanks Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Riverbanks Present, no further details Natural
Wetlands Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Wetlands Present, no further details Natural
Littoral
Coastal areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Coastal areas Present, no further details Natural
Mangroves Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Mangroves Present, no further details Natural
Intertidal zone Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Intertidal zone Present, no further details Natural
Salt marshes Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Salt marshes Present, no further details Natural
Freshwater
Irrigation channels Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Rivers / streams Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Rivers / streams Present, no further details Natural
Marine
Inshore marine Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Inshore marine Present, no further details Natural

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics

There is little variation in chromosome numbers in the genus Annona, most species being diploid with 2n=14 or 2n=16, with the exception of the most invasive species A. glabra, which is recorded as a tetraploid species (2n=28) (Kessler, 1993). This appears to follow a trend as yet unproven, that higher chromosome numbers infer a higher chance of invasiveness. There are a number of Annona germplasm collections in the world, both in situ and ex situ, living and as seed, some including A. glabra (Pinto et al., 2005), and there is a new network in Mexico (Marroquin-Andrade, 2004).

Reproductive Biology

Trees begin to flower and fruit when 2 years old. Infante-Mata and Moreno-Casasola (2005) found seeds in Mexico remained viable for 3 months if buried in soil or floating in water, and germinated better (98%) in low moisture and sunny conditions. However, in contrast to some reports, detailed research by Setter et al. (2002) found that although 88% of seeds remained viable after 6 months in Australia, almost none <3%) were still viable after 1 year, and concluded that the seed bank would certainly be completely depleted within 3 years. Germination and seedling survival was also assessed in Nicaragua in relation to flood-tolerance and flood-escape mechanisms (Urquhart, 2004). Reciprocal crosses were attempted using six Annona spp. including A. glabra, and although fruit was formed between some species, seeds were not viable except for those produced in two hybridizations, neither including A. glabra (Mohd-Khalid, 2002). However, Kumar and Jalikop (2000) found that many species did cross, and Annona atemoya crossed freely with A. glabra.

Physiology and Phenology

A. glabra behaves as a freshwater or brackish water mangrove, surviving both immersion at high tide and prolonged freshwater flooding. A. glabra is an opportunistic species and tends to establish in disturbed areas affected by floods or cyclones, but can also establish in relatively undisturbed environments. Seedlings need light for rapid growth, but they can remain dormant in semi-shaded conditions until a gap in the canopy is created (Land Protection, 2005). In Queensland, Australia, A. glabra flowers from December-February, fruit forming from January-March and falling from February-April, but sporadic flowering and fruiting can also occur at other times of the year. The effects of flooding and root temperature on the physiology and growth of A. glabra was assessed by Ojeda et al. (2004), and the effects of flooding and fertilization were tested by Gettys and Sutton (2001). A. glabra does propagate vegetatively, and multiplication via air layering (Nunez-Elisea et al., 2001), cuttings or in vitro have all proven successful.

Environmental Requirements

A. glabra is a tropical lowland species, requiring moist soil with regular inundations of fresh to brackish water, and it can withstand periods of flooding with its roots submerged for several weeks continuously, but it does not appear to survive permanent inundation (Land Protection, 2005).

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])

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Absolute minimum temperature (ºC) 10 0

Rainfall

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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Dry season duration02number of consecutive months with <40 mm rainfall

Rainfall Regime

Top of page Bimodal
Uniform

Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • impeded
  • seasonally waterlogged

Soil reaction

  • acid
  • alkaline
  • neutral

Soil texture

  • heavy
  • medium

Special soil tolerances

  • infertile
  • saline
  • shallow

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Anastrepha suspensa
Bactrocera jarvisi
Bactrocera kandiensis
Bactrocera neohumeralis
Bactrocera tryoni
Trialeurodes ricini

Means of Movement and Dispersal

Top of page Natural Dispersal (Non-Biotic)

Both fruit and seed can float and remain viable for many months in fresh or saline water and can germinate in fresh or brackish sites. Fruiting coincides with the wet season when flooding is common, and it is also spread along the coast by ocean currents (Land Protection, 2005).

Vector Transmission (Biotic)

Although generally spread by water, seed can also be disseminated by feral pigs, wallabies, cassowaries and other fruit-eating animals (Land Protection, 2005; PIER, 2008), with Anonymous (2003) noting that cassowaries can spread seed 1-2 km and feral pigs can disperse seed up to 10 km. Studies on gut passage rates of A. glabra seeds through southern cassowaries combined with bird movement data by Setter et al. (2002) estimated that these birds might regularly disperse seeds up to 350 m from source plants and occasionally 1200 m, which has important management implications as it showed birds could disperse A. glabra between watersheds. Further research showed that seeds have increased germination when deposited singly rather than in clumps by the southern cassowary (Casuarius casuarius), and that dispersal distances by cassowaries were estimated to be from 12 m to 5.2 km, and that even though A. glabra might be expected to be almost entirely dispersed downstream and along margins of aquatic and marine habitats, cassowaries provide dispersal upstream and between drainages leading to novel dispersal outcomes (Westcott et al., 2008).

Intentional Introduction

A. glabra was introduced as a species that had promise as a commercial crop, such as to South-East Asia (Pinto et al., 2005), and as to Australia as a rootstock for commercial Annona species (Land Protection, 2005).

Pathway Vectors

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Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Economic/livelihood Negative
Environment (generally) Negative

Economic Impact

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A. glabra is mostly considered as an environmental weed in Australia, but it is having economic impacts as it spreads, and it is now threatening the sugar cane and cattle industries by growing in and along creeks, fences and farm drains (Anonymous, 2003).

Environmental Impact

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A. glabra currently covers approximately 2000 ha in Queensland, Australia and its potential for spreading throughout coastal regions of tropical and subtropical Australia is considerable. Thickets are capable of replacing whole ecosystems, and disturbed flood-prone ecosystems are most at risk. Melaleuca wetlands, Pandanus swamps and Heritiera littoralis mangrove communities are at special risk, as well as riparian areas, coastal dunes and islands (Land Protection, 2005). In Sri Lanka, the spread of A. glabra is of particular concern as it has the ability to convert wetlands into terrestrial ecosystems by enhancing the process of natural succession of wetlands, and it is noted as one of the worst three invasive plants in a studies sanctuary (Bambaradeniya et al., 2002).

There may also be positive impacts on biodiversity by providing food for native species even where introduced and invasive, such as endangered southern cassowary in Queensland, Australia (Gosper et al., 2005), and the tailed jay butterfly (Graphium agamemnon) in Sri Lanka (Bambaradeniya et al., 2002).

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Has a broad native range
  • Pioneering in disturbed areas
  • Highly mobile locally
  • Long lived
  • Has high reproductive potential
Impact outcomes
  • Damaged ecosystem services
  • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
  • Modification of successional patterns
  • Monoculture formation
  • Negatively impacts agriculture
  • Reduced native biodiversity
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition - shading
  • Rapid growth
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
  • Difficult to identify/detect in the field
  • Difficult/costly to control

Uses

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A. glabra produces edible fruit that is collected and consumed from wild trees in its native range, sometimes made into alcoholic drinks or jams, and it has potential for commercial production (Pinto et al., 2005). It is used as a rootstock for preparing commercial grafted Annona cherimola trees in Australia (Anon., 2003), and is rated as a highly flood-tolerant tropical fruit tree species that shows promise elsewhere as a flood-tolerant rootstock for commercial Annona species (Nunez-Elisea et al., 2001). It is a valuable ornamental species in some places, especially in Florida, USA where it is native. It is also valued for its medicinal uses, and specific chemicals have recently been identified in China from the seeds (Chen et al., 2006) and bark (Kuai et al., 2006). Varied multiple uses are reviewed by Singh et al. (2004). A different use has been found following the observation that A. glabra was not eaten by the Giant African snail, Achatina fulica, that it is planted as low dense hedges around desirable crops to prevent infestations of the snail (Prasad et al., 2004), and the molluscicidal properties of Annona spp. including A. glabra are proven (Santos and Sant’Ana, 2001).

Uses List

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Environmental

  • Graft stock
  • Ornamental

Human food and beverage

  • Beverage base

Medicinal, pharmaceutical

  • Source of medicine/pharmaceutical
  • Traditional/folklore

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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A. glabra is sometimes confused with the custard apple, Annona reticulata (Pinto et al., 2005). It can be confused with native mangrove species in Australia as they also occupy the same habitats and both have lenticels (small, raised cork-like structures), but can be easily differentiated by crushing leaves of A. glabra, which emit a distinct green apple-like smell (Land Protection, 2005).

Prevention and Control

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The following is largely taken from Anonymous (2003) and Land Protection (2005) on controlling A. glabra in Queensland, Australia. The best time of the year for control is during the dry season (August-November) when access is easier. Control work should start at the top of the catchment or the uppermost section of the creek, river or waterway. A combination of mechanical, chemical control and fire may prove most effective in control and follow-up is essential.

Control

Cultural control and sanitary measures

A. glabra is very susceptible to fire, but adequate control requires sufficient fuel, which is not often available in dense infestations, and fire can kill even seeds on the ground.

Physical/mechanical control

Hand pulling is feasible for small plants, and chain pulling and bulldozing on level ground with no sensitive vegetation, ensuring that the roots of uprooted trees are not left in contact with the soil or they may resprout.

Biological control

Biological control has not been investigated in Australia, and as other Annona species are grown commercially and there are native Annonaceae, any biological agent would need to be species-specific to avoid damage to such desirable species (Anon., 2003).

Chemical control

Triclopyr or glyphosate can both be used for stem injection and cut stump treatments, triclopyr or fluroxypyr as a basal bark treatment, and imazapyr or glyphosate for foliar applications (Land Protection, 2005). Stem injection is recommended for aquatic areas as it minimises herbicide run-off and off-target impacts, and can be carried out with an axe or drill, downwards, holes 5 cm apart, so it is not so suited to larger trees due to the number of cuts/holes required and it is also difficult to control multi-stemmed trees where each separate stem requires treatment. The cut stump method is more suitable for use on large trees and multi-stemmed plants. Basal bark treatment involves spraying or painting herbicide from ground level up to 50 cm, which is a rapid method of control in areas with large monocultures, but should not be used in aquatic situations for both environmental and effectiveness reasons. Foliar application of herbicides is useful for dense monocultures of young plants up to 1 m tall where there is no risk of damaging native vegetation (Land Protection, 2005).

Ecosystem Restoration

In Sri Lanka, it was recommended by Bambaradeniya et al. (2002) that the removal of A. glabra should be simultaneously accompanied by replanting of native scrub species such as Cerbera manghas, Syzigium spp, and Pandanus spp.

References

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Anonymous, 2003. Weed Management Guide. Australia: CRC - National Heritage Trust. http://www.weeds.au/documents/wmg_pond_apple

Bambaradeniya CNB; Ekanayake SP; Kekulandala LDCB; Samarawickrama VAP; Ratnayake ND; Fernando RHSS, 2002. An assessment of the status of biodiversity in the Muthurajawela Wetland Sanctuary. Occasional Papers of IUCN Sri Lanka No.3 [ed. by The World Conservation Union IUCN-]. Sri Lanka: IUCN. http://209.104/search?q=cache:n8dDgpk8NUgJ:www.iucn.org/places/srilanka/pdf/First%2520Pages%2520New

Chen XiaoLing; Li Xiang; Chen JianWei; Zhang YongHong, 2006. Chemical constituents from the seed of Annona glabra. Chinese Journal of Natural Medicines, 4(3):195-197. http://zgtryw.periodicals.net.cn

Ervin JM, 2007. PS 26-37. ESA/SER Joint Meeting, San Jose, California, USA, 5-10 August 2007. http://eco.confex.com/eco/2007/techprogram/P5639

Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2007. Flora of China Web. Cambridge, USA: Harvard University Herbaria. http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/

Gettys LA; Sutton DL, 2001. Effect of flooding and fertilizer on growth of seedlings of pond Apple. Proceedings of the Florida State Horticultural Society, 114:205-209.

Gosper CR; Stansbury CD; Vivian-Smith G, 2005. Seed dispersal of fleshy-fruited invasive plants by birds: contributing factors and management options. Diversity and Distributions, 11(6):549-558. http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1366-9516.2005.00195.x

Holm LG; Pancho JV; Herberger JP; Plucknett DL, 1979. A geographical atlas of world weeds. New York, USA: John Wiley and Sons, 391 pp.

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29/02/08 Original text by:

Nick Pasiecznik, Consultant, France

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