Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Crassula ovata
(Miller) Druce, Crassulaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Risk assessment results:  Low risk, score: -4 (Go to the risk assessment)

Other Latin names:  Cotyledon ovata Mill.; Crassula argentea Thunb.; Crassula portulacea Lam.

Common name(s): [more details]

English: Japanese rubberplant, Japanese-laurel, baby jade, cauliflower-ears, dollarplant, jade plant, jade tree

Habit:  succulent

Description:  "A large, much branched, completely glabrous, very floriferous shrub, 06-3 m. or more high. Stem up to 20 cm. in diameter at the base, subterete, succulent, greyish; branches denuded, ± marked with the scars of the fallen leaves. Leaves 2-5 x 1-3 cm., obovate or broadly elliptical to obovate-spathulate, shortly acuminate and acute or subrounded at the top, entire and reddish at the sharply edged margin, attenuate towards a subpetiolar base, subconnate when young, free with age, fleshy, flattened, slightly concave above and slightly convex beneath, with nectary dots in one row on both sides near the margin (but dots also scattered on both surfaces), green and shining when fresh, dark brown and ± covered with a micaceous caducous peeling layer when dry, ± condensed at the extremities of the branchlets, longer than the internodes. Flowers 5-merous, arranged in terminal, ± dense to loose corymbose, pedunculate inflorescences; peduncles 1-4 cm. long; pedicels 4.5-8 mm. long. Calyx ± 5 mm. in diameter, campanulate to nearly saucer-shaped; sepals 1.15 mm. high and ± 15 mm. broad at the base, broadly triangular, acute, connate for ± 1 mm., separated by a rounded sinus, fleshy, their external surface similar to that of the leaves. Corolla white or faintly rose; petals (5) 6.25-7.5 (10) mm. long, oblong or lanceolate, keeled, acute, mucronate at the apex, slightly connate at the base, spreading. Stamen-filaments 4-5.5 mm. long; anthers fertile c. 05 mm. broad, transverse-oblong, or sterile c. 075 mm. long and oblong or lanceolate. Follicles 3-3.25 mm. long, obliquely oblong-ovoid; styles 2-3 mm. long, filiform. Scales broader than long"  (Flora Zambesiaca online).

Habitat/ecology:  In its native range, "in open forests, on sandy-clayey grey soil"  (Flora Zambesiaca online).

Propagation:  Seed?

Native range:  Mozambique, sOUTH a (GRIN).


Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaua‘i Island introduced
Lorence, David H./Flynn, Timothy W./Wagner, Warren L. (1995) (pp. 32-33)
Voucher cited: T. Flynn & D. Lorence 5489 (PTBG)
"Naturalized locally on cliffs".
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island   Bishop Museum (U.S.A. Hawaii. Honolulu.) (1950) (voucher ID: BISH 47806)
Taxon name on voucher: Crassula ovata (Miller) Druce

Comments:  Mozambique, South Africa; cultivated and naturalized elsewhere (GRIN).

Control:  If you know of control methods for Crassula ovata, please let us know.

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This page was created on 8 FEB 2010 and was last updated on 17 MAR 2013.