Smoke Bush

smokebush1Smoke bush (Buddleja madagascariensis)


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.

smokebush3In Hawaii:

  • 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)

For more information, see: