Invasive Species Compendium

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Datasheet

Orbea variegata
(carrion-flower)

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Datasheet

Orbea variegata (carrion-flower)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 26 November 2021
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Orbea variegata
  • Preferred Common Name
  • carrion-flower
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Dicotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Orbea variegata is a leafless, stem succulent, perennial herb  native to South Africa, where it is widespread in the southwestern Cape. Introduced to Australia, it is widely cultivated there as a hardy, ‘low-care’ ornamental plant. This s...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Orbea variegata; Flowers and foliage. October 2013.
TitleFlowers
CaptionOrbea variegata; Flowers and foliage. October 2013.
Copyright©Philosofia/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Flowers and foliage. October 2013.
FlowersOrbea variegata; Flowers and foliage. October 2013.©Philosofia/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.
TitleFlower
CaptionOrbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.
Copyright©Jose Luis Cernadas Iglesias/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.
FlowerOrbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.©Jose Luis Cernadas Iglesias/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Flower detail showing outer and inner corrolla - outer corrolla looks like five pointed star, inner corrolla is a complex structure with two sets of 5 heads. January 2016.
TitleFlower detail
CaptionOrbea variegata; Flower detail showing outer and inner corrolla - outer corrolla looks like five pointed star, inner corrolla is a complex structure with two sets of 5 heads. January 2016.
Copyright©Dave Kirkeby (Davefoc)/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Flower detail showing outer and inner corrolla - outer corrolla looks like five pointed star, inner corrolla is a complex structure with two sets of 5 heads. January 2016.
Flower detailOrbea variegata; Flower detail showing outer and inner corrolla - outer corrolla looks like five pointed star, inner corrolla is a complex structure with two sets of 5 heads. January 2016.©Dave Kirkeby (Davefoc)/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; House plant. August 2010.
TitleHabit
CaptionOrbea variegata; House plant. August 2010.
Copyright©Maja Dumat/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; House plant. August 2010.
HabitOrbea variegata; House plant. August 2010.©Maja Dumat/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Bud and foliage. Berlin botanical garden, Germany. December 2019.
TitleBud and foliage
CaptionOrbea variegata; Bud and foliage. Berlin botanical garden, Germany. December 2019.
Copyright©Salicyna/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Bud and foliage. Berlin botanical garden, Germany. December 2019.
Bud and foliageOrbea variegata; Bud and foliage. Berlin botanical garden, Germany. December 2019.©Salicyna/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Flower bud. February 2010.
TitleFlower bud
CaptionOrbea variegata; Flower bud. February 2010.
Copyright©Maja Dumat/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Flower bud. February 2010.
Flower budOrbea variegata; Flower bud. February 2010.©Maja Dumat/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Flower. September 2020.
TitleFlower
CaptionOrbea variegata; Flower. September 2020.
Copyright©AiramannaR/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Flower. September 2020.
FlowerOrbea variegata; Flower. September 2020.©AiramannaR/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.
TitleFlower
CaptionOrbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.
Copyright©Jose Luis Cernadas Iglesias/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.
FlowerOrbea variegata; Flower. Porto de Santa Cruz, Galicia, Spain. September 2012.©Jose Luis Cernadas Iglesias/via Flickr - CC BY 2.0
Orbea variegata; Fruit. May 2017.
TitleFruit
CaptionOrbea variegata; Fruit. May 2017.
Copyright©Pplazaro/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Fruit. May 2017.
FruitOrbea variegata; Fruit. May 2017.©Pplazaro/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Opened seedpod on plant. July 2016.
TitleSeedpod
CaptionOrbea variegata; Opened seedpod on plant. July 2016.
Copyright©Albertomos/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Opened seedpod on plant. July 2016.
SeedpodOrbea variegata; Opened seedpod on plant. July 2016.©Albertomos/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Seedpod. August 2009.
TitleSeedpod
CaptionOrbea variegata; Seedpod. August 2009.
Copyright©Roberto Guido (MadBob)/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 3.0
Orbea variegata; Seedpod. August 2009.
SeedpodOrbea variegata; Seedpod. August 2009.©Roberto Guido (MadBob)/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 3.0
Orbea variegata; Seedpod with seeds. July 2016.
TitleSeedpod
CaptionOrbea variegata; Seedpod with seeds. July 2016.
Copyright©Albertomos/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Seedpod with seeds. July 2016.
SeedpodOrbea variegata; Seedpod with seeds. July 2016.©Albertomos/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Seed. July 2016.
TitleSeed
CaptionOrbea variegata; Seed. July 2016.
Copyright©Albertomos/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Seed. July 2016.
SeedOrbea variegata; Seed. July 2016.©Albertomos/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Pollinarium removed from the flower. January 2016.
TitlePollinarium
CaptionOrbea variegata; Pollinarium removed from the flower. January 2016.
Copyright©Dave Kirkeby (Davefoc)/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0
Orbea variegata; Pollinarium removed from the flower. January 2016.
PollinariumOrbea variegata; Pollinarium removed from the flower. January 2016.©Dave Kirkeby (Davefoc)/via Wikimedia Commons - CC BY-SA 4.0

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Orbea variegata (L.) Haw.

Preferred Common Name

  • carrion-flower

Other Scientific Names

  • Stapelia variegata L.
  • Stisseria variegata (L.) Kuntze

International Common Names

  • English: African carrion flower; star flower; starfish plant; starfish-cactus; toad plant; toad-cactus

Local Common Names

  • South Africa: aasblom; bokhoring
  • Sweden: ordensstjärna

Summary of Invasiveness

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Orbea variegata is a leafless, stem succulent, perennial herb  native to South Africa, where it is widespread in the southwestern Cape. Introduced to Australia, it is widely cultivated there as a hardy, ‘low-care’ ornamental plant. This species has escaped cultivation and is naturalized in semi-arid and arid parts of Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales and Queensland. O. variegata is considered invasive in the arid regions of the northeastern Eyre Peninsula (South Australia), where it is invading the chenopod and saltbush/bluebush vegetation communities. The presence of O. variegata has reduced the number of seedlings emerging from the soil seed bank and the biomass of annual plants in this habitat.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Dicotyledonae
  •                     Order: Gentianales
  •                         Family: Asclepiadaceae
  •                             Genus: Orbea
  •                                 Species: Orbea variegata

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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The genus Orbea consists of about 56 species widely distributed throughout Africa and the southwestern Arabian Peninsula (Bruyns, 2002; Bruyns, 2005Hyde et al., 2020). O. variegata belongs to the family Apocynaceae, subfamily Asclepiadoideae, tribe Ceropegieae, subtribe Stapeliinae (Germishuizen and Meyer, 2003; Bruyns, 2005; USDA-ARS, 2020). As one of the first South African species of Orbea cultivated in Europe, many hybrids have been produced, with most of them described as distinct species at some stage (Bester, 2006). The genus name Orbea is derived from the Latin word orbis, which refers to the central raised disc or annulus found in the flowers of most species. 

Description

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The following description is from Bruyns (2002):

Small succulent, forming clumps 5-20 cm (-1 m) in diameter, not rhizomatous. Stems 2.5-10 cm long, 0.5-1 cm in diameter (excluding teeth), (shortly) decumbent, green mottled with purple-brown; tubercles 3-9 mm long, arranged loosely into four obtuse rows along stem with a groove between rows, tapering to a spreading to ascending conical acute tooth, often with a minute denticle on either side near apex. Inflorescence one per stem near base, of one to three flowers developing successively from a short peduncle (10 mm long), with a few small subulate bracts (<1.5 mm long); pedicel 20-60 mm long, 2-3 mm in diameter, horizontal usually with ascending apex holding flower facing upwards, pale green to pinkish streaked with red-purple. Sepals 5-8 mm long, 2-3 mm wide at base, ovate to ovate-lanceolate, acute to acuminate. Corolla 5-8 cm in diameter, outside smooth, pale cream-green becoming veined with red-purple towards tips of lobes; inside wrinkled on annulus, transversely wrinkled on lobes, becoming nearly smooth towards tips as well as base of tube and behind rim of annulus, cream to greenish yellow variously spotted with purple-brown, with fewer and finer dots on annulus; tube shallowly bowl-shaped, formed by annulus around gynostegium. Annulus pentagonal to circular and 18-23 mm in diameter, shallowly bowl-shaped with spreading to recurved and thinner rim, with dense patch of short erect cylindrical bristles in base around gynostegium; lobes 16-25 mm long, 12-21 mm wide at base, ovate, acute to shortly acuminate, spreading to slightly recurved, margins hairless. Corona 8 mm tall, 12-15 mm in diameter, raised above base of tube on a short cylindrical stipe <1 mm tall; outer lobes 4-6 mm long, 2 mm wide at base, ascending spreading, linear-oblong narrowing slightly towards 2-3 toothed apex, slightly thicker along centre than towards sides, cream dotted with purple brown (larger purple-brown patch at base under guide-rail); inner lobes 3-4 mm long, pressed to backs of anthers, then rising up connivent-erect in centre and recurved towards tips, dorsiventrally flattened and ovate near base, then narrowing to nearly terete and with club-like apex, with an ascending slightly spreading laterally flattened dorsal horn up to 3-4 mm long below level of anthers, also with the apex clavate-tuberculate, cream dotted with purple-brown.

Plant Type

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Perennial
Seed / spore propagated
Succulent
Vegetatively propagated

Distribution

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Orbea variegata is native to South Africa and widespread in the southwestern Cape; it is found southwards to the hills around Cape Town and along the Cape Peninsula (Bruyns, 2002). It is listed as introduced in Zimbabwe (Hyde et al., 2020), Botswana (Setshogo, 2005), Australia (Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia, Queensland, New South Wales) and New Zealand (Atlas of Living Australia, 2020). This species is also listed as introduced in France, Spain, Panama and Brazil (Sánchez Gómez et al., 2005; GBIF, 2020).

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: 17 Dec 2021
Continent/Country/Region Distribution Last Reported Origin First Reported Invasive Reference Notes

Africa

BotswanaPresentIntroduced
South AfricaPresentNativeWidespread in the southwestern Cape, it is found southwards to the hills around Cape Town and along the Cape Peninsula
ZimbabwePresentIntroduced

Europe

FrancePresentIntroduced
SpainPresentIntroducedCited as Stapelia variegata, in Alicante. Specimens recorded seem to be in the naturalization phase

North America

PanamaPresentIntroduced

Oceania

AustraliaPresentIntroduced
-New South WalesPresentIntroduced
-QueenslandPresentIntroduced
-South AustraliaPresentIntroducedInvasiveNortheastern Eyre Peninsula
-TasmaniaPresentIntroduced
-Western AustraliaPresentIntroduced
New ZealandPresentIntroduced

South America

BrazilPresentIntroduced

History of Introduction and Spread

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Orbea variegata is believed to have been introduced to Australia as an easy-care garden perennial (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999) and to divert flies away from homes (Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018). It is unclear exactly when O. variegata arrived in Australia; it was first collected from a field near the BHP (Broken Hill Proprietary) nursery in Whyalla (South Australia) in 1967 (Friedel, 2020). By 1985, eight separate populations were observed in the Whyalla region (Hudson, 1985). In 1969 this species was collected at Wallumbilla in south-east Queensland and found cultivated in Tasmania in 1982 (Friedel, 2020). It is a popular ornamental and has been grown in Whyalla gardens for at least 40 years (Lenz and Facelli, 2003).

Risk of Introduction

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There is evidence that seed viability is low in introduced populations of O. variegata (Meve and Liede, 1994). It has spread gradually from plantings in towns and settlements with significant populations first noted on the rocky hills within Whyalla. Spread into shrublands is more likely to occur in years with above average summer rainfall that allows germination and establishment to occur (Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018; Government of South Australia, 2021). The potential range of O. variegata as a weed is limited to the semi-arid areas of the Whyalla region (Government of South Australia, 2021).

The likelihood of the introduction of O. variegata in other parts of Australia has been prevented as it has been declared a pest species under the Natural Resources Management Act 2004, throughout the whole of the state of South Australia, with prohibition of its sale and movement (Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018; Government of South Australia, 2021). It is designated a priority weed in New South Wales under the Biosecurity Act 2015 to prevent, eliminate or minimize any biosecurity risk the plant may pose (Biosecurity South Australia, 2015Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018). Although not available in the nursery trade this species is usually obtained as a gift or through informal sale in South Australia (Government of South Australia, 2021), allowing some risk of further spread.

The Hawai’i Pacific Weed Risk Assessment screening process showed O. variegata has a high risk of becoming invasive in Hawaii and other countries in the Pacific regions (Chimera, 2015).

Habitat

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Orbea variegata generally grows on gentle (rarely steep), stony slopes, sometimes under bushes but also more or less fully exposed on rock slabs or ledges; it is particularly common on sand or granite or shale outcrops in semi-arid habitats (Bruyns, 2002). In Australia, O. variegata can be found on exposed and sheltered sites in arid regions, on hill tops and stony rises and in association with bluebush and other chenopods (Biosecurity South Australia, 2015).

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial ManagedCultivated / agricultural land Secondary/tolerated habitat Productive/non-natural
Terrestrial ManagedProtected agriculture (e.g. glasshouse production) Secondary/tolerated habitat Productive/non-natural
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalScrub / shrublands Secondary/tolerated habitat Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalArid regions Principal habitat Natural

Hosts/Species Affected

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There is no evidence that O. variegata affects crops in its introduced range.

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics

Chromosome numbers of 2n = 22 (Albers and Austmann, 1987) and 2n = 44 (Albers et al., 1988) have been reported for O. variegata.

Reproductive Biology

Orbea variegata is a self-fertilizing species (Barad, 1990). Flowers are star-shaped, approximately 5-8 cm across and produce a fetid odour similar to dung and carrion that attracts flies, the main pollinators (Meve and Liede, 1994; Dunbar and Facelli, 1999). Like other stapeliads, Orbea spp. are pollinated by dipterans. It has been observed that cultivated O. variegata are visited by the common housefly, Musca domestica and by carrion flies of the genus Sarcophaga in South Africa (Bruyns, 2002). The main dominant compound of the scent emitted from the flowers is dimethyl trisulphide (Jürgens et al., 2006). Each flower produces a two-pronged fruit that encloses numerous, wind-dispersed seeds (Hamilton et al., 2013). The plant forms dense mats with stems that root at the nodes and spread vegetatively (Albers and Meve, 1991).

Physiology and Phenology

Orbea variegata is a perennial, clonal, CAM stem succulent (Lange and Zuber, 1980). Flowering between December and April and from spring and summer, the plant grows new stems that form patches of dense mats of leafless perennial stems up to 15 cm long in South Australia (Lenz and Facelli, 2003). The seed viability is 6% and the seeds do not appear to have a dormancy period (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999), germinating with the first available water (Lenz and Facelli, 2003).

Associations

In South Australia, the naturalized populations of O. variegata are associated with chenopod shrubland species such as Atriplex vesicaria and Maireana spp. (Chenopodiaceae) with scattered Acacia papyrocarpa trees (Lenz and Facelli, 2003).

Environmental Requirements

Orbea variegata is native to South Africa, where it grows in well-drained rocky areas (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999) with winter dominant rainfall averaging 250 to 700 mm a year (Lenz and Facelli, 2003). It is found from sea level up to altitudes of 1000 m in South Africa (Bruyns, 2002).

Naturalized populations of O. variegata are found in South Australia, where the climate is semi-arid with a mean annual rainfall of 275 to 512 mm and mean maximum temperatures range from 30°C in January to 20°C in July (Lenz and Facelli, 2003). O. variegata grows in arid or semi-arid areas with sandy and well-drained soil (NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020). It requires partial shade from permanent vegetation or rock outcrops during summer and good drainage (Government of South Australia, 2021).

Climate

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ClimateStatusDescriptionRemark
BS - Steppe climate Preferred > 430mm and < 860mm annual precipitation
BW - Desert climate Preferred < 430mm annual precipitation
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 Tolerated Warm temperate climate with dry winter (Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, dry winters)

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Absolute minimum temperature (ºC) 45 40

Rainfall Regime

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Summer
Winter

Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • free

Soil texture

  • light

Notes on Natural Enemies

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The most common pests include scale on the stems and mealy bugs on the roots which can cause fungal infections (Bruyns, 2002; Bester, 2006), but their impacts on the population appear minimal (Lenz and Facelli, 2003). O. variegata has been reported as a host plant of the larvae of Danaus chrysippus; larvae were observed feeding on the stems and flowers (Van der Heyden, 2010).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Natural Dispersal

A tuft of silky hairs attached to the seeds of O. variegata aids wind dispersal (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999). During high precipitation events, fragments of the plant can spread by water (NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020).

Vector Transmission (Biotic)

Orbea variegata can spread vegetatively by stem fragments, which may also be moved by machinery, animals, humans or water (Biosecurity South Australia, 2015Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020).

Accidental Introduction

There is no evidence that the propagules have any means of causing accidental introductions in countries through contamination.

Intentional Introduction

Orbea variegata has been intentionally introduced for ornamental purposes in Australia for at least 40 years (Lenz and Facelli, 2003). The plant is commonly grown in pots and rockeries throughout the Southern Rangelands and other dry rural areas and as a hardy, low-care perennial in South Australia. (Hamilton et al., 2013; NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020). The plant fits into the no care-ornamental category and it is mentioned as being grown in the Upper Eyre Peninsula, both for its flowers and its ability to attract flies (Honan, 2006). The plant has escaped from gardens or from garden waste dumped in the bush (NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020; Government of South Australia, 2021).

Orbea variegata is widespread in South Africa’s southwestern Cape (Bruyns, 2002), and is frequently cultivated in other areas of the country; some records might well represent escapes from local gardens rather than instances of naturally occurring populations (Bruyns, 2002).

Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Cultural/amenity Positive
Economic/livelihood Positive
Environment (generally) Negative

Environmental Impact

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Orbea variegata has become naturalized in southern Queensland, at Kalgoorlie in Western Australia, in north-eastern New South Wales and in suburban Adelaide (Government of South Australia, 2021). This species is naturalized and invasive on the Eyre Peninsula, from the Whyalla to Port Augusta area in the southern parts of South Australia (Government of South Australia, 2021). It has been recorded there for over 40 years (Lenz and Facelli, 2003) and is invading the chenopod and saltbush/bluebush vegetation communities dominated by Atriplex vesicaria (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999). The naturalized populations of O. variegata grow upright and close together, forming dense mats that spread via asexual reproduction (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999), covering up 20% of the shrubland community (Lenz and Facelli, 2003).

Orbea variegata grows in the shade (root zone) of the dominant shrub, A. vesicaria (bladder saltbush), which facilitates the growth of O. variegata across all life stages. Reductions in temperature and radiation appear to be the main facilitative mechanisms, although shrub canopies do not seem to be required for the establishment or survival of O. variegata (Lenz and Facelli, 2003). O. variegata affects the growth of A. vesicaria by limiting water availability by direct competition, a decrease in rainfall penetration through the soil, or a combination of both. O. variegata also has a detrimental effect on the annual plant community by reducing the number of seedlings emerging from the soil seed bank and the biomass of ephemerals growing under dense O. variegata mats (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999).

In 2010, a small population of O. variegata was recorded in Pilliga National Park in north-western New South Wales (Australia) which, due to its relatively small extent was immediately treated to prevent further spread (Hamilton et al., 2013). The Hawai’i Pacific Weed Risk Assessment screening process showed this species has a high risk of becoming invasive in Hawaii and other countries in the Pacific regions (Chimera, 2015).

Risk and Impact Factors

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Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Tolerant of shade
  • Highly mobile locally
  • Long lived
  • Fast growing
  • Has high reproductive potential
  • Reproduces asexually
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately

Uses

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Economic Value

Like other species in the genus, the economic value of O. variegata is mainly as an ornamental. The plants are greatly sought after by succulent collectors and are grown and exchanged worldwide. In Europe and America, they are cultivated mainly in greenhouses (Bester, 2006).

Uses List

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Environmental

  • Amenity

General

  • Botanical garden/zoo

Ornamental

  • garden plant
  • Potted plant

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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Orbea variegata is closely related to O. namaquensis, the flowers of which are very similar to those of O. variegata but are mostly larger and more strikingly marked, with the corolla uniformly thick right to the edge, not becoming thin towards the rim, as with O. variegata. Other closely related species are O. pulchella and O. verrucosa; O. variegata can be differentiated from both by its generally larger flowers and annulus and longer outer and inner corona lobes (Bruyns, 2002).

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.

SPS Measures

In South Australia, O. variegata is a declared weed under the Natural Resources Management Act 2004, and for the areas of the Alinytjara Wilurara and the Eyre Peninsula, indicating that it must not be moved or sold throughout the state, and is required to be controlled in the specific areas mentioned (Biosecurity South Australia, 2015; Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018).

Orbea variegata is a priority weed in New South Wales, Australia, under the Biosecurity Act 2015 and its subordinate legislation and the Regional Strategic Weed Management Plans. The general biosecurity duties are to prevent, eliminate or minimize any biosecurity risk the plant may pose (NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020).

Public Awareness

There is an awareness campaign on the impacts of O. variegata to encourage voluntary compliance with control requirements in the Eyre Peninsula in South Australia (Biosecurity South Australia, 2015).

Physical/Mechanical Control

The roots of O. variegata are very dense and concentrated in the upper 10 cm of soil (Dunbar and Facelli, 1999). The plants can therefore be removed easily by hand pulling. Care should be taken to collect the whole plant and dispose of it appropriately to prevent regrowth or spread (NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020). This method of control is labour-intensive and recommended only for small, urban infestations (Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018Government of South Australia, 2021).

Biological Control

No potential biological agents for this species have been identified. However, reports from South Africa of scale on the skin and mealy bugs on the roots of O. variegata and a snout-beetle pest known to feed on the stems of stapeliads might be options worth exploring (Tribe, 1984; Bester, 2006; Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018).

Chemical Control

In an infestation of O. variegata in the Gilgais region of Pilliga National Park in north-western New South Wales, Australia, the herbicides triclopyr and fluroxypyr were shown to achieve 100% and 98% mortality of the plant, respectively (Hamilton et al., 2013).

References

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Albers, F., Austmann, M., Meve, U., 1988. Chromosome number report. International Organization of Plant Biosystematists Newsletter, (11), 10-12. https://www.iapt-taxon.org/files/IOPB_newsletter/PDFIOP_11.pdf

Albers, F., Austmann, M., 1987. Chromosome Number Reports 95. Taxon, 36(2), 493-498.

Albers, F., Meve, U., 1991. Mixoploidy and cytotypes: a study of possible vegetative species differentiation in stapeliads (Asclepiadaceae). Bothalia, 21(1), 67-72.

Atlas of Living Australia, 2020. Atlas of Living Australia. In: Atlas of Living Australia Canberra, ACT, Australia: GBIF.http://www.ala.org.au

Barad, G. S., 1990. Pollination of the stapeliads. Cactus and Succulent Journal, 62(3), 130-140.

Bester, S. P., 2006. Orbea Haw. Pretoria, South Africa: South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI).http://pza.sanbi.org/orbea

Biosecurity South Australia, 2015. Factsheet. Declared plant: carrion flower Orbea variegata. Adelaide, Australia: Department of Primary Industries and Regions South Australia.2 pp. https://pir.sa.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0013/240025/carrion_flower_fsheet.pdf

Bruyns, P. V., 2005. Stapeliads of Southern Africa and Madagascar. Volumes 1 and 2, Hatfield, South Africa: Umdaus Press.vi + 606 pp.

Bruyns, PV, 2002. Monograph of Orbea and Ballyanthus (Apocynaceae-Asclepiadoideae-Ceropegieae). Systematic Botany Monographs, 63, 1-196. doi: https://doi.org/10.2307/25027899

Chimera, C., 2015. Orbea variegata. Hawaii, USA: Coordinating Group on Alien Pest Species (CGAPS).https://plantpono.org/wp-content/uploads/Orbea-variegata.pdf

Dunbar, K. R., Facelli, J. M., 1999. The impact of a novel invasive species, Orbea variegata (African carrion flower), on the chenopod shrublands of South Australia. Journal of Arid Environments, 41(1), 37-48. doi: 10.1006/jare.1998.0471

Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, 2018. Pest species regional management plan: Orbea variegata, carrion flower. Australia: Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board, Government of South Australia.17 pp. https://cdn.environment.sa.gov.au/landscape/docs/ep/181016-carrion-flower-management-plan.pdf

Friedel, M. H., 2020. Unwelcome guests: a selective history of weed introductions to arid and semi-arid Australia. Australian Journal of Botany, 68(2), 75-99. doi: 10.1071/BT20030

GBIF, 2020. Global Biodiversity Information Facility. In: Global Biodiversity Information Facility . http://www.gbif.org/species

Germishuizen, G., Meyer, N. L., 2003. Plants of southern Africa: an annotated checklist, [ed. by Germishuizen, G., Meyer, N. L.]. Pretoria, South Africa: National Botanical Institute.vi + 1231 pp.

Government of South Australia, 2021. Declared plant policy: carrion flower (Orbea variegata). Adelaide, Australia: Government of South Australia.4 pp. https://pir.sa.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/234550/carrion_flower_policy.pdf

Hamilton, M. A., Turner, P. J., Wurst, D., 2013. Carrion flower, a novel invasive species in NSW. [17th NSW Weeds Conference, Weeds have no boundaries, 9-12 September 2013, Corowa, NSW, Australia], Muswellbrook, Australia: Weed Society of New South Wales. 133-136. http://nswweedsoc.org.au/items/839/17NSWWC%20Proceedings%202013.pdf

Heyden, T. van der, 2010. Orbea variegata (L.) Haworth, 1812 (Apocynaceae, Asclepiadoideae) as a larval host plant of Danaus chrysippus (Linnaeus, 1758) on the Canary Islands (Spain) (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae, Danainae). (Orbea variegata (L.) Haworth, 1812 (Apocynaceae, Asclepiadoideae) als Futterpflanze der Larven von Danaus chrysippus (Linnaeus, 1758) auf den Kanarischen Inseln (Spanien) (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae, Danainae)). SHILAP Revista de Lepidopterología, 38(149), 107-110.

Honan, I., 2006. A succulent escape in the arid lands of southern Australia - carrion flower (Orbea variegata). In: 15th Australian Weeds Conference, Papers and Proceedings, Adelaide, South Australia, 24-28 September 2006: Managing weeds in a changing climate, [ed. by Preston, C., Watts, J. H., Crossman, N. D.]. Victoria, Australia: Weed Management Society of South Australia. 188-190.

Hudson, P., 1985. The naturalisation of Stapelia variegata L. (Asclepiadaceae) at Whyalla, South Australia. South Australian Naturalist, 60, 32-34.

Hyde, M. A., Wursten, B. T., Ballings, P., Coates Palgrave, M., 2020. Flora of Zimbabwe. In: Flora of Zimbabwe . http://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/

Jürgens, A., Dötterl, S., Meve, U., 2006. The chemical nature of fetid floral odours in stapeliads (Apocynaceae-Asclepiadoideae-Ceropegieae). New Phytologist, 172(3), 452-468.

Lange, O. L., Zuber, M., 1980. Temperature dependence of CO2 exchange in stem succulent members of the Asclepiadaceae having Crassulacean acid metabolism. (Temperaturabhängigkeit des CO2-Gaswechsels stammsukkulenter Asclepiadaceen mit Säurestoffwechsel). Flora (Jena), 170(5-6), 529-553.

Lenz, T. I., Facelli, J. M., 2003. Shade facilitates an invasive stem succulent in a chenopod shrubland in South Australia. Austral Ecology, 28(5), 480-490. doi: 10.1046/j.1442-9993.2003.01304.x

Meve, U., Liede, S., 1994. Floral biology and pollination in stapeliads - new results and a literature review. Plant Systematics and Evolution, 192(1-2), 99-116. doi: 10.1007/BF00985911

NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2020. NSW WeedWise. Orange, Australia: Department of Primary Industries New South Wales.https://weeds.dpi.nsw.gov.au/

Sánchez Gómez, P., López Espinosa, J. A., Vera, J. B., López Romero, C., Jiménez, J. F., 2005. New records on vascular flora from SE Spain. (Novedades corológicas para la flora vascular del sureste ibérico). Anales de Biología, 27, 127-132.

Setshogo, MP, 2005. Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 37. Pretoria and Gaborone, South Africa: SABONET.169 pp.

Tribe, G. D., 1984. A snout-beetle pest of stapeliads in South Africa. Aloe, 1(3-4), 70-71.

USDA-ARS, 2020. Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Online Database. In: Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Online Database Beltsville, Maryland, USA: National Germplasm Resources Laboratory.https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxon/taxonomysimple.aspx

Distribution References

Atlas of Living Australia, 2020. Atlas of Living Australia. In: Atlas of Living Australia, Canberra, ACT, Australia: GBIF. http://www.ala.org.au

Bruyns PV, 2002. Monograph of Orbea and Ballyanthus (Apocynaceae-Asclepiadoideae-Ceropegieae). Systematic Botany Monographs. 1-196. DOI:https://doi.org/10.2307/25027899

Dunbar K R, Facelli J M, 1999. The impact of a novel invasive species, Orbea variegata (African carrion flower), on the chenopod shrublands of South Australia. Journal of Arid Environments. 41 (1), 37-48. DOI:10.1006/jare.1998.0471

GBIF, 2020. Global Biodiversity Information Facility. In: Global Biodiversity Information Facility, http://www.gbif.org/species

Hyde M A, Wursten B T, Ballings P, Coates Palgrave M, 2020. Flora of Zimbabwe. In: Flora of Zimbabwe, http://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/

Sánchez Gómez P, López Espinosa J A, Vera J B, López Romero C, Jiménez J F, 2005. New records on vascular flora from SE Spain. (Novedades corológicas para la flora vascular del sureste ibérico.). Anales de Biología. 127-132.

Seebens H, Blackburn T M, Dyer E E, Genovesi P, Hulme P E, Jeschke J M, Pagad S, Pyšek P, Winter M, Arianoutsou M, Bacher S, Blasius B, Brundu G, Capinha C, Celesti-Grapow L, Dawson W, Dullinger S, Fuentes N, Jäger H, Kartesz J, Kenis M, Kreft H, Kühn I, Lenzner B, Liebhold A, Mosena A (et al), 2017. No saturation in the accumulation of alien species worldwide. Nature Communications. 8 (2), 14435. http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms14435

Setshogo MP, 2005. Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 37., Pretoria and Gaborone, South Africa: SABONET. 169 pp.

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17/07/2020 Original text by:

Manuel Angel Duenas-Lopez, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Wallingford, UK

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