Weed Identification

Australia > > Chinese Violet (a form of)

Chinese Violet (a form of)

Asystasia gangetica ssp. micrantha

THIS PLANT IS ON THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL ALERT LIST
http://www.weeds.gov.au/weeds/lists/alert.html

THIS PLANT IS LISTED BY D.A.F.F. AS 1 OF 17 CANDIDATE SLEEPER WEEDS

IMPORTANT: IF YOU SUSPECT THE PRESENCE OF THIS PLANT, PLEASE REPORT IT BY CALLING 1800 084 881 (local call cost anywhere in Australia).


Family: Acanthaceae.

Form: Herb

Origin: Native of the African tropics and subtropics, India and Sri Lanka but original native range obscure.

Flowers/Seedhead: Flowers: Flowers all year round.

Description: Perennial mat-forming creeper to 3 m high on supporting vegetation but usually less than 0.5 m high. Tailing stems root at nodes. Leaves to 8 (rarely to 17) cm long and to 4 (rarely to 5.5) cm wide. Fruit green but dries to brown after opening, containing a conspicuous hook about 3 mm long at base of each seed. Seeds hairless, bone-coloured to brownish black, about 5 mm long and 1 mm thick.

Distinguishing features: Distinguished by opposite leaves; flowers in terminal racemes, each flower to 2.5 cm long, white outside and inside except for middle lobe of lowest lip which has purple blotches in two parallel lines down raised ridges on the inside; fruit to 3.6 cm long, guitar-shaped (with neck of guitar attached to stem) and containing 4 flattened seeds.

Dispersal: By explosive release of seed and locally by trailing stems.

Confused With: Asystasia gangetica ssp. gangetica, referred to as Chinese Violet, has larger (34 cm long) blue or mauve flowers.


Guitar-shaped fruit, flower,
opposite leaves

Notes: Garden escape. Capable of smothering other ground plants. Known from Anna Bay and Boat Harbour area near Nelson Bay in NSW. Both forms of Chinese Violet are considered to be weedy in Malaysia but ssp. micrantha is more of a problem, particularly in oil palm estates. Subspecies gangetica is naturalised in Queensland and the NT.

References:

    Plant Protection Quarterly. S. Ismail and A. Shukor, 1998, Vol. 13, pages 140142.

Web References: Search Australian web sites for further information on this weed.


Dense stand at Boat Harbour, NSW

Root system

Flat seeds & pods
with hooks inside

This weed has been included in the WEEDeck field guide as card H34

More information about WEEDeck is available from Sainty & Associates Pty. Ltd.

 

Australia > > Chinese Violet (a form of)

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