Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Merremia (446)

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  • Restricted. South and Southeast Asia, East Africa, North America (Canada), Oceania. In many Pacific islands.
  • Important very fast-growing invasive weed dominating bush fallows and forests, becoming especially aggressive in disturbed areas, smothering crops and logged forests, forming dense canopies stifling regrowth. One of top10 weeds of Solomon Islands, Vanuatu.
  • Vines, smooth, woody at the base, up to 30 m long growing from underground tubers. Leaves, alternate along stems, almost round, up to 30 cm across, purple-veined below, with leaf stalk attached to lower surface. Flowers, funnel-shaped, white, 5-6 cm long. Seeds, furry, 1-4 inside a round capsule.
  • Spread: by fast-growing vines; seed; stem pieces; on machinery; trade in ornamentals; and use as a ground cover.
  • Biosecurity: high risk of introduction. On Global Invasive Species Database of alien invasive species (IUCN, 2020). Seed available on internet.
  • Biocontrol: no information available.
  • Cultural control: hand-pulling; slashing; mowing; allow cattle to eat it; reducing spacing in forest plantations to increase shade; vehicle hygiene to remove seed.
  • Chemical control: in Australia (foliar): MCPA. Elsewhere (foliar): 2,4-D; dicamba; triclopyr; picloram; glyphosate (e.g., Fiji); triclopyr + picloram. For cut-vine application: triclopyr; glyphosate (e.g, Fiji).
Common Name


Scientific Name

Merremia peltata. It is a member of the Convolvulaceae.

 AUTHORS Grahame Jackson, Aradhana Deesh & Mani Mua
Information from 1Waterhouse DF, Norris KR (1987) Merremia peltata. Biological Control Pacific Prospects. Inkata Press, Melbourne; CABI (2019) Merremia peltata. Invasive Species Compendium. Invasive Species Compendium. (; and Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (2009) Merremia peltata (L.) Merr., Convolvulaceae. (; and from Global Invasive Species Database (2020) Species profile: Merremia peltata. ( Photo 5 Paitia Nagalevu, SPC, Land Resources Division, Suva, Fiji.

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project HORT/2016/185: Responding to emerging pest and disease threats to horticulture in the Pacific islands, implemented by the University of Queensland, in association with the Pacific Community and Koronivia Research Station, Ministry of Agriculture, Fiji.

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