Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

Callaeum macropterum


Australian/New Zealand Weed Risk Assessment adapted for Hawai‘i.
Information on Risk Assessments
Original risk assessment
 Mascagnia macroptera (yellow butterfly vine, yellow orchid vine) -Malphigiaceae Synonym - Callaeum macropterum Answer Score
1.01 Is the species highly domesticated? n 0
1.02 Has the species become naturalized where grown? n  
1.03 Does the species have weedy races? n  
2.01 Species suited to tropical or subtropical climate(s) (0-low; 1-intermediate; 2-high) – If island is primarily wet habitat, then substitute “wet tropical” for “tropical or subtropical” 2  
2.02 Quality of climate match data (0-low; 1-intermediate; 2-high)                 see appendix 2 2  
2.03 Broad climate suitability (environmental versatility) n 0
2.04 Native or naturalized in regions with tropical or subtropical climates y 1
2.05 Does the species have a history of repeated introductions outside its natural range?  y=-2 n  
3.01 Naturalized beyond native range         y = 1*multiplier (see Append 2), n= question 2.05 n 0
3.02 Garden/amenity/disturbance weed                              y = 1*multiplier (see Append 2) n 0
3.03 Agricultural/forestry/horticultural weed                         y = 2*multiplier (see Append 2) n 0
3.04 Environmental weed                                                     y = 2*multiplier (see Append 2) n 0
3.05 Congeneric weed                                                          y = 1*multiplier (see Append 2) y 2
4.01 Produces spines, thorns or burrs n 0
4.02 Allelopathic n 0
4.03 Parasitic n 0
4.04 Unpalatable to grazing animals    
4.05 Toxic to animals y 1
4.06 Host for recognized pests and pathogens n 0
4.07 Causes allergies or is otherwise toxic to humans n 0
4.08 Creates a fire hazard in natural ecosystems y 1
4.09 Is a shade tolerant plant at some stage of its life cycle n 0
4.1 Tolerates a wide range of soil conditions (or limestone conditions if not a volcanic island) y 1
4.11 Climbing or smothering growth habit y 1
4.12 Forms dense thickets    
5.01 Aquatic n 0
5.02 Grass n 0
5.03 Nitrogen fixing woody plant n 0
5.04 Geophyte (herbaceous with underground storage organs -- bulbs, corms, or tubers) n 0
6.01 Evidence of substantial reproductive failure in native habitat n 0
6.02 Produces viable seed. y 1
6.03 Hybridizes naturally    
6.04 Self-compatible or apomictic n -1
6.05 Requires specialist pollinators n 0
6.06 Reproduction by vegetative fragmentation n -1
6.07 Minimum generative time (years)                 1 year = 1, 2 or 3 years = 0, 4+ years = -1 1 1
7.01 Propagules likely to be dispersed unintentionally (plants growing in heavily trafficked areas) y 1
7.02 Propagules dispersed intentionally by people y 1
7.03 Propagules likely to disperse as a produce contaminant n -1
7.04 Propagules adapted to wind dispersal y 1
7.05 Propagules water dispersed n -1
7.06 Propagules bird dispersed n -1
7.07 Propagules dispersed by other animals (externally) n -1
7.08 Propagules survive passage through the gut n -1
8.01 Prolific seed production (>1000/m2) n -1
8.02 Evidence that a persistent propagule bank is formed (>1 yr) y 1
8.03 Well controlled by herbicides    
8.04 Tolerates, or benefits from, mutilation, cultivation, or fire y 1
8.05 Effective natural enemies present locally (e.g. introduced biocontrol agents)    
  Total score:   6

Supporting data:

  Notes Reference
1.01 No evidence  
1.02 No evidence  
1.03 No evidence  
2.01 (1)Native to Mexico.  (2)Range/Origin: Mexico (3)This is an evergreen vine native to central Baja California, central Sonora and south throughout most of Mexico. (1)  (2) (3)
2.03 (1)hardy just to USDA Hardiness Zone 8  (2)Hardiness:
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6° C (20° F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8° C (25° F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1°C (30° F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7° C (35° F)  (3)Hardiness range 9B -11.
(1) (2) (3)
2.04 (1)Native to Mexico.  (2)Range/Origin: Mexico (3)This is an evergreen vine native to central Baja California, central Sonora and south throughout most of Mexico. (1)  (2) (3)
2.05 Available for sale in the U.S. throught the plant nursery 'Almost Eden' (in LA).
3.01 No evidence  
3.02 No evidence  
3.03 No evidence  
3.04 No evidence  
3.05 (1)M. pubiflora is listed as a weed.  (2)M. pubiflora is on the list of plants to be prohibited for import into Western Australia. (1)  (2)
4.01 No evidence of these structures. (1)  (2)
4.02 No evidence  
4.03 No evidence  
4.04 Don’t know.  
4.05 (1)Poisonous to vertebrates.  (2)A disease occurs in cattle in the coastal areas of the State of Santa Catarina characterized by sudden death. The disease was reproduced in cattle by oral administration of Mascagnia sp. Single doses of 5 g/kg of fresh leaves caused non-lethal poisoning; single doses of 7.5 g/kg caused lethal poisoning in one of two cattle and doses of 10 g/kg death in two others. In the experiments clinical signs appeared when the animals were exercised. They consisted of weakness, swollen jugular vein, slight muscular tremors and sometimes sudden contractions; tachycardia, already observed before the exercise, became more intense. At the end the animals suddenly laid down or fell on their side. The course of poisoning in those two animals which were followed up till death, was 40 and 75 minutes. The highest doses given (15 and 20 g/kg) caused a protracted course; the animals got slow and apathetic, avoiding any movements. They were found dead 7h 45 min and 21 h after the first clinical signs. These two last experiments show the importance of exercise regarding the onset of symptoms and the occurrence of "sudden death". The main post-mortem findings were intense red discoloration of the mucosa of the small intestine and oedema of the gall bladder wall. The main histological alteration was hydropic vacuolar degeneration of the tubular epithelium of the kidney in 3 of the 5 cattle which died.  (3)Congeners M. pubiflora nad M. coccinia are toxic to cattle. (1)  (2)Sudden death in cattle by Mascagnia sp. (Malpighiaceae) in the State of Santa Catarina, Brazil  . / Mortes subitas em bovinos causadas pela ingestao de Mascagnia sp. (Malpighiaceae), no Estado de Santa Catarina By: Gava, A.;  Pesquisa Veterinaria Brasileira 18 (1), 1998, p.16-20. (3)Mascagnia concinna (Morton), a plant poisonous to cattle  . / Mascagnia concinna, (Morton), planta toxica al ganado vacuno. [Summary of thesis.] By: Gomez W., B.;  Revista Instituto Colombiano Agropecuario 10 (4), 1975, p.513-514 (Journal article)  AND Poisoning by Mascagnia pubiflora in cattle in Matto Grosso State, Brazil]  . / Intoxicaccao por mascagnia pubiflora em bovinos no Grosso By: Tokarnia, C. H.;  Pesquisa Agropecuaria Brasileira, Serie Veterinaria 8 (6), 1973, p.61-68 (Journal article) AND Mascagnia pubiflora poisoning in cattle in Mato Grosso State  . By: Tokarnia, C. H.;  Pesquisa Agropecuaria Brasileira, Veterinaria 8 (6), 1973, p.61-68 (Journal article)
4.06 No evidence of associated pests or pathogens.  
4.07 No evidence  
4.08 (1)Deciduos vine.  (2) Needs attachment if grown on walls; prune out dead wood. - photo of vine. (3)A gregarious vine.  [Dead wood collects on the plant which can be a fire hazard]. (1)  (2)
4.09 (1)Another great attribute is the plant's incredible heat tolerance. It's virtually impervious to the baking sun and well-suited for west-facing walls and places that receive reflected heat in summer. It's a fast grower, reaching 10-12 feet high, and also grows in partial shade.  (2)Sun Exposure:
Full Sun (3)Sun exposure - full sun.
(1)  (2)  (3)
4.1 (1)Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)  (2)Soil: any (3)Soil Condition: Acidic, Clay, Loamy, Neutral, Sandy, Slightly alkaline, Well drained
(1)  (2)  (3)
4.11 (1)& (2(Fast growing vine.  (3)This aggressive heat-loving vine can climb 15 to 20 feet up a trellis or fence or without support it will twine on itself, growing in a mound which can be kept pruned to a shrub or groundcover.  4)"This is a gregarious vine. It took about 5 years to get a hold and it is now growing down fences, up trees, over lawns. I take the runners and remove the leaves on the lower 5 inches and pot them in a mix of black dirt and garden comost." (1)  (2)  (3)
plantdisplay.asp?cat_id=13&plant_id=2499&page=2   (4)
4.12  "This is a gregarious vine. It took about 5 years to get a hold and it is now growing down fences, up trees, over lawns. I take the runners and remove the leaves on the lower 5 inches and pot them in a mix of black dirt and garden comost."  [The reference suggest that it can form thickets but no further evidence on its ability to form thickets.]
5.01 Fast growing vine. (1)  (2)
6.01 No evidence  
6.02 Propagation by seed.  and
6.03 Don’t know - no evidence of hybrids in the genus Mascagnia, the genus however does not appear to be well studied.  
6.04 (1)Probably pollinated by insects - 'This year the Mascagnia vine put forth only a few flowers ... likely the result of an unwise January pruning. Late May or early June, shortly after the normal flowering period would be the best time for pruning. This would give the plant time to grow and recover. Most years there are hundreds of bright, five-petaled, yellow flowers. Despite all of the flowers, nary a single fruit, about 7 cm across with three broad, papery wings, will set (nurseries are calling this plant Yellow Orchid Vine). The thousands of yellow flowers on my Blue Palo Verde only resulted in about fifty bean pods. Like many plants, these plants require cross fertilization. And because most of the plants in my yard are many kilometers from their conspecifics in the "real" desert, there is little chance for that. What is more, many plants have specific pollinator needs. Honey bees, Carpenter Bees, Plasterer Bees, and Leaf-cutter Bees paid visits to the Palo Verde blooms, but not a single insect was seen at the Mascagnia vine.'  (2)Flower morphology from photo does not suggest adaptation to a specialized pollinator.
6.05 Probably not - photo of flowers does not suggest so.
6.06 No evidence of spread by vegetative means.  
6.07 Easy to grow and a fast crop. "Once they're established, they're extremely fast growers. It's pretty remarkable."  However, with its fast growth, it's also a good candidate as an annual vine in Northern climates. It would easily reach heights in a few months that could be enjoyed by homeowners before being killed by winter freezes.
7.01 (1)Fruit remains on for months. Often used in dried arrangments. (2)"The green seed pods if picked while green, stay green,and are beautiful in dry arrangements. I find the seed pods are very cheerful to add to get well wishes. I have even used them on package bows."   [Could be dispersed unintentionally by people through dry flowers arrangement]. (1)  (2)
7.02 Ornamental vine.
7.03 Probably not - Although the seeds remain attached to the plant for a long time and are oftern used in dry arrangement - no evidence that this is done commercailly and hence may not be a likely produce contaminant].
7.04 (1)Fruit: large papery seed capsules, green at first then drying to tan. (See photo of seed pods). Fruit remains on for months. Often used in dried arrangments. (2)The seeds of the butterfly vine are housed in a unique winged schizocarp (a dry fruit that splits when mature, i.e. maple seeds). The schizocarp [shy' zo carp] of the butterfly vine divides into three sections. Each section has three wings, two which are shaped like butterfly wings and a third smaller dorsal wing which appears to serve as a stabilizer as the seed drifts in the wind. (1)  (2)
7.05 Probably not - no evidence that the species inhabits water ways.  
7.06 Wind dispersed seeds.  
7.07 No evidence that the propagules have any means of attachment.  
7.08 No wind dispersed seeds.  
8.01 "At first, I was collecting what looked like seeds when the blooms faded. Then, I thought that the seeds had to be in the butterfly "body"; otherwise, it would not form this structure. I use both thumbnails to pull the butterfly "body" apart. The seeds are encapsulated inside. To make sure the seed is viable, I roll it between my thumb and forefinger. If it is a "good" seed, it will not crumble. If it is an old seed or if it has been munched on by insects, it will crumble." [Probably not - it seems like each 'butterfly structure has only one seed].
8.02 (1) Seed Collecting:Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds  (2)Fruit remains on for months. Often used in dried arrangments. (1)  (2)
8.03 No evidence that the species is being controlled for.  
8.04 Prune out dead wood. In the spring, can prune down to 2ft to reduce size or reinvigorate.
8.05 Don’t know.  

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This page was created on 27 December 2006 by JS, and was last updated on 30 August 2017 by PT.