This species is rated “HIGH RISK” for invasiveness, with a score of “7” by the Weed Risk Assessment for Hawaii and Pacific Islands. Smoke bush is recognized as an invasive species in Florida, Australia, South Africa, and in the Caribbean.
- Viney shrub with dense, sprawling habit
- Clusters of small, orange, attractive, fragrant flowers
- Gray-green leaves 3-5″ long
- Seeds born in pulpy fruits on terminal clusters
- Native to Madagascar, introduced to Hawaii as an ornamental plant
- Aggressive invader of disturbed areas at mid to low elevations, including open range, stream beds, and gulches
- Forms dense stands that crowd out and compete with native plants
- Plant produces numerous fruit that are attractive to birds, which disperse the seeds.
- Mechanical and chemical control of this species is difficult.
- Kauai: Spreading in Kokee, encroaching on native ecosystems. On Kauai Landscaping Industry Council’s “Don’t Sell” list as part of the Landscapers’ Voluntary Codes of Conduct.
- Oahu: Present, but only in few locations, including East Range, Mililani Mauka, on Army property. Monitored and targeted by Oahu Invasive Species Committee (OISC). Please report all sightings by calling 286-4616.
- Maui: Serious invader in mid-elevation sites, especially Kula, and lowland moist to wet sites, such as near Puaa Kaa Wayside on the road to Hana
- Molokai: None known
- Lanai: None known
- Kahoolawe: None known
- Big Island: Infestations in Volcano. Targeted for control by the Big Island Invasive Species Committee (BIISC)