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  • Merremia tuberosa (woodrose)  (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, www.hear.org)
  • Merremia tuberosa (woodrose)  (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, www.hear.org)
  • Merremia tuberosa (woodrose)  (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, www.hear.org)
  • Merremia tuberosa (Fruit and leaves) (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, www.hear.org)
  • Merremia tuberosa (Flower) (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, www.hear.org)
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Common name
liane-jaune (French), quinamacal (Spanish), quiebra machet (Spanish), quiebra caje- te (Spanish), bejuco de golondrin (Spanish), foco de luz (Spanish), Ceylon morning glory (English), bara- asa-gao (Japanese), rosa de barranco (Spanish), Brazilian jalap (English), xixcamátic (Náhuatl)
Synonym
Ipomoea tuberosa , L.
Batatas tuberosa , (L.) Bojer
Operculina tuberosa , (L.) Meisn.
Similar species
Summary
Merremia tuberosa is a climbing vine that is native to Mexico and parts of central America that has become invasive on various Pacific islands and parts of the United States. The vine overgrows tall hardwood forest canopies and smothers native trees and shrubs. Its population on Niue is reported as especially aggressive.
Species Description
Merremia tuberosa is a long, climbing vine. Its leaves are simple and the blades are circular in outline, 6-16 cm long and wide, the base is cordate, and margins are palmately 5-7 lobed almost to the base. The lobes are 8-20 cm long, 9-20 cm wide, ovate, 3-9 cm long, 1-5 cm wide, and leaf margins are entire. Its stems are basally woody, perennial, twining, and glabrous. Flowers usually occur in clusters and fully bloom in sunlight and close under cloudy conditions and in the dark. The corolla is yellow, glabrous, funnelform, contortiplicate, enclosed by the sepals in bud, and comprised of 4 petals 5-6 cm long. It has 3 petioles which are 6-18 cm long and glabrous. Its pedicels are 15-18 mm long, claviform, glabrous, and enlarge in fruit. Its sepals are unequal, with the outer two longer than the inner three. They are oval to almost orbicular, with a rounded apex, membranous apically, somewhat herbaceous basally, and 23-25 mm long. Its sepals equally enlarge in fruit. The inner three are oblong, 12-20 mm long. Its filament is unequal, 2.5-3 cm long, glandular, and pubescent. The pistil is glabrous, 4-locular, and the stigma is globose. It has tuberous taproots. The fruits are globose to depressed globose and 3-3.5 cm in diameter. The calyx is accrescent, with fruiting sepals divergent but supporting the fruit. 1-4 seeds occur per fruit and are black to dark-brown, ovoid, 1.5-2 cm long, smooth surfaced, and covered with short, erect, puberulent indumentum (Austin, 1998; Motooka et al, 2003).
Lifecycle Stages
Merremia tuberosa is a perennial vine that produces bright yellow morning-glory-like inflorescences in the late fall. Fruits occur abundantly in early winter. By late December and early January die backs occurs. Its seeds remain viable for several years and germinate readily even in conditions of low light (Langland & Stocker, 2001; PIER, 2008).
Uses
The roots of Merremia tuberose contain resins that were formerly used across the tropics and in Europe as laxatives. Now plants are grown for their flowers and ornamental fruits that are used by florists. Its grated root was historically found useful for those that have swollen bellies and whose intestines rumble. A mixture was also drunk while fasting, to purge, and to lower fever (Austin, 1998).
Habitat Description
Merremia tuberosa is known to grow in mesic forests from 0-1,400 m elevation. It is a climbing vine that grows over trees or other surfaces and prefers high levels of sunlight. It is also reported to require fertile, well-drained soils (Smith, undated; PIER, 2008).
Reproduction
Merremia tuberosa reproduces primarily through seed production and also by vegetative fragmentation. It produces an abundant seed set in the winter that germinate readily (PIER, 2008; Langland & Stocker, 2001).
Pathway
Merremia tuberosa was spread through as a medicine throughout Europe when it was discovered in Mexico, and subsequently through horticulture trade around the world. The roots contain resins that formerly were used across the tropics and in Europe as laxatives. Now it is grown and introduced for their flowers and ornamental fruits that are used by florists (Austin, 1998).

Principal source: Austin, Daniel F. 1998. Xixicamatic or wood rose (Merremia tuberosa, Convolvulaceae): Origins and dispersal. Economic Botany. 52(4). Oct.-Dec., 1998. 412-422.
Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk (PIER), 2008. Merremia tuberosa (L.) Rendle, Convolvulaceae
Smith, Clifford W., Undated. Impact of Alien Plants on Hawaiis Native Biota

Compiler: Comit� fran�ais de l'UICN (IUCN French Committee) & IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)

Review: Dr. Daniel F. Austin, Center for Sonoran Desert Studies, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

Publication date: 2010-07-16

Recommended citation: Global Invasive Species Database (2017) Species profile: Merremia tuberosa. Downloaded from http://www.iucngisd.org/gisd/species.php?sc=1279 on 20-08-2017.

General Impacts
Merremia tuberosa is known to overgrow and smother tall hardwood forest canopies. This perennial vine blocks sunlight from trees and the understory, killing native trees and shubs. M. tuberosa has been especially problematic on the island of Niue where it has spread quickly and aggressively (Space & Flynn, 2000). It is also reported to be toxic to animals and humans and should not be ingested by either (Smith, undated; PIER, 2005; Motooka et al, 2003; Orapa, 2003; Space & Flynn, 2000; Staples 2010).
Management Info
Preventative measures: A Risk Assessment of Merremia tuberosa for Hawai‘i and other Pacific islands was prepared by Dr. Curtis Daehler (UH Botany) with funding from the Kaulunani Urban Forestry Program and US Forest Service. The alien plant screening system is derived from Pheloung et al. (1999) with minor modifications for use in Pacific islands (Daehler et al. 2004). The result is a 'High Risk' score of 12 and a recommendation of: \"Likely to cause significant ecological or economic harm in Hawai‘i and on other Pacific Islands as determined by a high WRA score, which is based on published sources describing species biology and behaviour in Hawai‘i and/or other parts of the world.\"

Chemical: A study evaluated two types of herbicide applied by backpack sprayer for the treatment of M. tuberosa in Florida. Garlon 4 at 10% concentration applied to the basal surface of M. tuberosa was evaluated to achieve excellent control. Garlon 3A at 50% applied to cut surfaces of M. tuberosa achieved good control. Both herbicides are recommended to be applied to cut stems as it is evident which stems were effectively treated and which were missed within a week of application (Kline & Duquesnel, 1996; Langland & Stocker, 2001).

Physical: Seedlings of M. tuberosa may be hand-pulled (PIER, 2008). \n

Biological control: The use of a biological control for M. tuberosa has been recommended and is being investigated (Dovey et al, 2004).

Countries (or multi-country features) with distribution records for Merremia tuberosa
Informations on Merremia tuberosa has been recorded for the following locations. Click on the name for additional informations.
Lorem Ipsum
Location Status Invasiveness Occurrence Source
Details of Merremia tuberosa in information
Status
Invasiveness
Arrival date
Occurrence
Source
Introduction
Species notes for this location
Location note
Management notes for this location
Impact
Mechanism:
Outcome:
Ecosystem services:
Impact information
Merremia tuberosa is known to overgrow and smother tall hardwood forest canopies. This perennial vine blocks sunlight from trees and the understory, killing native trees and shubs. M. tuberosa has been especially problematic on the island of Niue where it has spread quickly and aggressively (Space & Flynn, 2000). It is also reported to be toxic to animals and humans and should not be ingested by either (Smith, undated; PIER, 2005; Motooka et al, 2003; Orapa, 2003; Space & Flynn, 2000; Staples 2010).
Red List assessed species 0:
Locations
UNITED STATES
Mechanism
[2] Competition
Outcomes
[2] Environmental Ecosystem - Habitat
  • [2] Reduction in native biodiversity
Management information
Preventative measures: A Risk Assessment of Merremia tuberosa for Hawai‘i and other Pacific islands was prepared by Dr. Curtis Daehler (UH Botany) with funding from the Kaulunani Urban Forestry Program and US Forest Service. The alien plant screening system is derived from Pheloung et al. (1999) with minor modifications for use in Pacific islands (Daehler et al. 2004). The result is a 'High Risk' score of 12 and a recommendation of: \"Likely to cause significant ecological or economic harm in Hawai‘i and on other Pacific Islands as determined by a high WRA score, which is based on published sources describing species biology and behaviour in Hawai‘i and/or other parts of the world.\"

Chemical: A study evaluated two types of herbicide applied by backpack sprayer for the treatment of M. tuberosa in Florida. Garlon 4 at 10% concentration applied to the basal surface of M. tuberosa was evaluated to achieve excellent control. Garlon 3A at 50% applied to cut surfaces of M. tuberosa achieved good control. Both herbicides are recommended to be applied to cut stems as it is evident which stems were effectively treated and which were missed within a week of application (Kline & Duquesnel, 1996; Langland & Stocker, 2001).

Physical: Seedlings of M. tuberosa may be hand-pulled (PIER, 2008). \n

Biological control: The use of a biological control for M. tuberosa has been recommended and is being investigated (Dovey et al, 2004).

Locations
SAMOA
UNITED STATES
Management Category
Prevention
Bibliography
47 references found for Merremia tuberosa

Managment information
Daehler, Curtis C., 1998. The taxonomic distribution of invasive angiosperm plants: Ecological insights and comparison to agricultural weeds. Biological Conservation Volume 84, Issue 2, May 1998, Pages 167-180
Daehler, Curtis C. & Debbie A. Carino., 2000. Predicting invasive plants: prospects for a general screening system based on current regional models. Biological Invasions 2: 93�102, 2000.
Dovey, L., Orapa, W. and Randall, S. 2004. The need to build biological control capacity in the Pacific. In: Proceedings of the XI International Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds (eds Cullen, J.M., Briese, D.T., Kriticos, D.J., Lonsdale, W.M., Morin, L. and Scott, J.K.) pp. 36 - 41. CSIRO Entomology, Canberra, Australia.
Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System (EDDMaps), 2009. Spanish arborvine Merremia tuberosa (L.) Rendle
Summary: Available from: http://www.eddmaps.org/florida/distribution/viewmap.cfm?sub=6017 [Accessed November 9 2009]
Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council (FLEPPC) 2009. Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council�s 2009 List of Invasive Plant Species.
Summary: Available from: http://www.fleppc.org/list/09PlantListfinal.pdf [Accessed November 9 2009]
Hunsberger, Adrian G. B., 2001. Invasive and Banned Plants of Miami-Dade County. University of Florida Extension
Langeland, K.A. and R.K. Stocker., 2001. Control of Non-native Plants in Natural Areas of Florida. University of Florida Extension. This document is SP 242, one of a series of the Department of Agronomy, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. First printed: 1997. Revised: April, 2001.
Motooka, P. et al. 2003. Merremia tuberosa: Weeds of Hawai�i�s Pastures and Natural Areas; An Identification and Management Guide, College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, University of Hawai�i at M�noa.
Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk (PIER), 2008. Risk Assessment Merremia tuberosa (L.) Rendle, Convolvulaceae
Summary: Available from: http://www.hear.org/pier/wra/pacific/merremia_tuberosa_htmlwra.htm [Accessed November 9 2009]
Varnham, K. 2006. Non-native species in UK Overseas Territories: a review. JNCC Report 372. Peterborough: United Kingdom.
Summary: This database compiles information on alien species from British Overseas Territories.
Available from: http://www.jncc.gov.uk/page-3660 [Accessed 10 November 2009]
General information
Austin, Daniel F. 1998. Xixicamatic or wood rose (Merremia tuberosa, Convolvulaceae): Origins and dispersal. Economic Botany. 52(4). Oct.-Dec., 1998. 412-422.
Barthelat, F. 2005. Note sur les esp�ces exotiques envahissantes � Mayotte. Direction de l�Agriculture et de la For�t. 30p
Summary: Tableau synth�tique des plantes exotiques de Mayotte class�es en fonction de leur niveau d envahissement.
Conservatoire Botanique National De Mascarin (BOULLET V. coord.) 2007. - Merremia tuberosa Index de la flore vasculaire de la R�union (Trach�ophytes) : statuts, menaces et protections. - Version 2007.1 (D
Summary: Base de donn�es sur la flore de la R�union. De nombreuses informations tr�s utiles.
Available from: http://flore.cbnm.org/index2.php?page=taxon&num=32cbf687880eb1674a07bf717761dd3a [Accessed 7 April 2008]
Fang, R.-Z. & Staples, G. W. 1995. Convolvulaceae 16. In: C.-Y. Wu & P. Raven (Eds.), Flora of China (pp. 271-325). Beijing and St. Louis: Science Press and Missouri Botanical Garden Press.
Fournet, J. 2002. Flore illustr�e des phan�rogames de guadeloupe et de Martinique. CIRAD-Gondwana editions.
Global Compendium of Weeds (GCW), 2009. Ipomoea tuberosa (Convolvulaceae)
Summary: Available from: http://www.hear.org/gcw/species/ipomoea_tuberosa/ [Accessed November 9 2009]
Gunn, C. R., & Dennis, J. V. 1976. World Guide to Tropical Drift Seeds and Fruits. New York: Quadrangle/New York Times Book Co.
Hemsley, W. B. 1892. A drift-seed (Ipomoea tuberose L.). Annuals of Botany, 6, 369-376.
ITIS (Integrated Taxonomic Information System), 2008. Online Database Merremia tuberosa (L.) Rendle
Summary: An online database that provides taxonomic information, common names, synonyms and geographical jurisdiction of a species. In addition links are provided to retrieve biological records and collection information from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) Data Portal and bioscience articles from BioOne journals.
Available from: http://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=30871 [Accessed 13 March 2008]
Josekutty, P. C, E. E. Wakuk, and M. J. Joseph., 2002. Invasive/Weedy Angiosperms in Kosrae, Federated States of Micronesia. Micronesica Suppl. 6: 61�65, 2002
MacKee, H.S. 1994. Catalogue des plantes introduites et cultiv�es en Nouvelle-Cal�donie, 2nd edn. MNHN, Paris.
Summary: Cet ouvrage liste 1412 taxons (esp�ces, sous esp�ces et vari�t�s) introduits en Nouvelle-Cal�donie. L auteur pr�cise dans la majorit� des cas si l esp�ce est cultiv�e ou naturalis�e.
Meyer, J.-Y., Loope, L., Sheppard, A., Munzinger, J., Jaffre, T. 2006. Les plantes envahissantes et potentiellement envahissantes dans l archipel n�o-cal�donien : premi�re �valuation et recommandations de gestion. in M.-L. Beauvais et al. (2006) : Les esp�ces envahissantes dans l�archipel n�o-cal�donien, Paris, IRD �ditions, 260 p.+ c�d�rom.
Orapa, Warea, 2003. Addressing Pasture Weed Problems in the Pacific. PAPER For Regional Workshop In The Field Of Invasive Plant Species In Pastoral Areas, New Caledonia Pouembout, IAC, 24-28 November 2003
Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk (PIER), 2008. Merremia tuberosa (L.) Rendle, Convolvulaceae
Summary: Available from: http://www.hear.org/pier/species/merremia_tuberosa.htm [Accessed November 9 2009]
PIER (Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk), 2006. Merremia tuberosa
Summary: Available from: http://www.hear.org/pier/species/merremia_tuberosa.htm [Accessed 7 April 2008]
Smith, Clifford W., Undated. Impact of Alien Plants on Hawaiis Native Biota
Summary: Available from: http://hear.org/books/hte1985/pdfs/hte1985smith.pdf [Accessed November 9 2009]
Space, James C and Tim Flynn, 1999. Observations on invasive plant species in American Samoa
Space, James C, Barbara Waterhouse, Julie S. Denslow and Duane Nelson., 2000. Invasive plant species on Rota, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
Summary: Available from: http://sprep.org/att/IRC/eCOPIES/INVASIVE%20SPECIES/CMI_rota.pdf [Accessed November 9 2009]
Staples, G. W. 2010. A checklist of Merremia (Convolvulaceae) in Australasia and the Pacific. Garden� Bulletin Singapore 61(2): 483-522.
Starr, Forest & Kim Martz, 1999. Botanical Survey of Midway Atoll 1999 Update. Prepared for: Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge United States Fish and Wildlife Service
Summary: Available from: http://www.hear.org/starr/publications/botanical_survey_of_midway_text.pdf [Accessed November 9 2009]
Starr, Forest; Kim Starr and Lloyd L. Loope., 2005. Roadside Survey and Expert Interviews for Selected Plant Species on Molokai Hawaii.
Starr, Kim and Forest Starr, 2008. Plants of Hawaii: Images Convolvulaceae Merremia tuberosa Woodrose
Summary: Available from: http://www.hear.org/starr/plants/images/species/?q=merremia+tuberosa [Accessed November 9 2009]
Wu, Shan-Huah; Chang-Fu Hsieh and Marcel Rejm�nek., 2004. Catalogue of the Naturalized Flora of Taiwan. Taiwania, 49(1):16-31, 2004
Summary: Available from: http://www.press.ntu.edu.tw/ejournal/files/taiwan%5C200403%5CWu-3.pdf [Accessed November 9 2009]
Contact
The following 4 contacts offer information an advice on Merremia tuberosa
Austin,
Daniel. F
Convolvulaceae.
Organization:
Research & Conservation Department, Book Review Editor, Economic Botany.
Address:
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum USA 2021 N. Kinney Road Tucson, AZ 85743
Phone:
Fax:
Barthelat,
Fabien
Organization:
Assistant Technique Union Internationale pour la Conservation de la Nature Initiative Cara�bes
Address:
C/O Parc National de Guadeloupe Habitation Beausoleil, Mont�ran 97120 Saint-Claude, Guadeloupe
Phone:
(+590) (0)590 80 86 00
Fax:
(+590) (0)590 80 05 46
Lavergne,
Christophe
Geographic region: Indian Ocean
Ecosystem: Terrestrial
Organization:
Conservatoire Botanique National de Mascarin
Address:
2 rue du P�re Georges Domaine des Colima�ons 97436 SAINT LEU
Phone:
(33) 02 62 24 92 27
Fax:
Meyer,
Jean-Yves
Geographic region: Pacific, Indian Ocean
Ecosystem: Terrestrial
Expert in the botany of French Polynesia and the Pacific Islands, and has worked on ecology and biological control of Miconia calvescens in French Polynesia.
Organization:
D�l�gation � la Recherche
Address:
D�l�gation � la Recherche, Gouvernement de Polyn�sie fran�aise. B.P. 20981, 98713 Papeete, Tahiti, Polyn�sie fran�aise
Phone:
689 47 25 60
Fax: