The distribution, impact and potential management of the introdued vine Passiflora mollissima (Passifloraceae) in Hawai'i

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1983-09
Authors
Warshauer, Frederick R.
Jacobi, James D.
La Rosa, Anne Marie
Scott, J Michael
Smith, Clifford W.
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Cooperative National Park Resources Studies Unit, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Botany
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Abstract
Passiflora mollissima, a weedy vine introduced to Hawai'i, infests significant portions of two of the major islands, Hawai'i and Kaua'i. It grows between 600 and 2200 m elevation in areas where the rainfall does not exceed 5100 mm. The vine is distributed continuously over a total of 190 km² and in more widely scattered populations over an additional 330 km². Man has been the principle agent of introduction for this species. However, intermediate-distance dispersal may be affected by introduced gallincaeous birds and cattle. Locally feral pigs are the major dispersal agent. Passiflora mollissima inhabits many of the major upland vegetation types in Hawaii but is most successful in mesic Acacia koa - Metrosideros polymorpha forests. Although over much of its current range its foliage cover is less than 25%, in some areas it is so dense that it smothers large tracts of native forest. Potential impacts of the infestation on depleted and endangered endemic organisms are also discussed. It is concluded that P. mollissima has become too widespread for successful mechanical or chemical control except in are as of recent local introduction. Prospects for biological control of this species are discussed in the context of current research efforts and practical problems related to a commercially grown congener.
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Warshauer FR, Jacobi JD, La Rosa AM, Scott JM, Smith CW. 1983. The distribution, impact and potential management of the introdued vine Passiflora mollissima (Passifloraceae) in Hawai'i. Honolulu (HI): Cooperative National Park Resources Studies Unit, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Botany. PCSU Technical Report, 48.
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