Bryophyllum pinnatum - (Lam.) Oken
Life-plant
Other English Common Names: Cathedral Bells
Other Common Names: cathedral bells
Synonym(s): Kalanchoe pinnata (Lam.) Pers.
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Kalanchoe pinnata (Lam.) Pers. (TSN 503277)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.160254
Element Code: PDCRA07080
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Stonecrop Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Rosales Crassulaceae Bryophyllum
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Kalanchoe pinnata
Taxonomic Comments: FNA (vol. 8, 2009) transfers Kalanchoe pinnata to Bryophyllum pinnatum; these represent the same concept for the element.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: GNR
Global Status Last Changed: 22Mar1994
Rounded Global Status: GNR - Not Yet Ranked
Nation: United States
National Status: NNA

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
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United States Florida (SNA), Hawaii (SNA)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

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NOTE: The distribution shown may be incomplete, particularly for some rapidly spreading exotic species.

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States FLexotic, HIexotic

Range Map
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Ecology & Life History Not yet assessed
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Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank)
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Disclaimer: While I-Rank information is available over NatureServe Explorer, NatureServe is not actively developing or maintaining these data. Species with I-RANKs do not represent a random sample of species exotic in the United States; available assessments may be biased toward those species with higher-than-average impact.

I-Rank: Medium/Low
Rounded I-Rank: Medium
I-Rank Reasons Summary: This subtropical/tropical succulent herb is established in central and southern Florida and on all of the main Hawaiian Islands except Ni'ihau and Kaho'olawe; climatic constrains will probably prevent it from expanding its generalized range much further in the continental US. Typically found on disturbed sites, but has also been documented from a variety of native habitats including coastal strand, shell mounds, hammocks (maritime, xeric, mesic, or rockland), and pine rockland in Florida and various dry to mesic forests and shrublands in the Hawaiian Islands. Can form dense colonies and has been found to "displace the forest understory" in some locations; cited as a threat to no less than 22 Federally listed plant species by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and others. Used as an ornamental; reproduces via plantlets that form along the leaf margins as well as by minute seeds. Also established in a variety of other tropical and subtropical locations; one of the worst invaders of the Galapagos and also a significant problem in Palau and parts of Australia.
Subrank I - Ecological Impact: Medium/Low
Subrank II - Current Distribution/Abundance: Low
Subrank III - Trend in Distribution/Abundance: Medium/Low
Subrank IV - Management Difficulty: Low
I-Rank Review Date: 31Aug2007
Evaluator: Gravuer, K.
Native anywhere in the U.S?
Native Range: Madagascar (USDA-ARS 2007)

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Screening Questions

S-1. Established outside cultivation as a non-native? YES
Comments: This species is a non-native that is established outside of cultivation (Kartesz 1999).

S-2. Present in conservation areas or other native species habitat? Yes
Comments: In Florida, has been found in several natural habitats, including coastal strand, shell mounds, hammocks (maritime, xeric, mesic, or rockland), and pine rockland (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001, Gann et al. 2007). In Hawaii, has been documented in dry to mesic forest and dry to mesic shrubland, in a variety of topographic settings, including slopes, gulches, ridges, and cliffs, from 0-850 m (0-2800 feet) (USFWS 1995, USFWS 2003).

Subrank I - Ecological Impact: Medium/Low

1. Impact on Ecosystem Processes and System-wide Parameters:Low significance/Insignificant
Comments: In the Kalalau Valley of Kauai, is "displacing the forest understory" (Lowry and Wood 2000), likely altering light levels for some forest species. However, has been naturalized since at least 1871 in the Hawaiian Islands (Wagner et al. 1990) and no reports of any other system-wide impacts were found.

2. Impact on Ecological Community Structure:Moderate significance
Comments: Forms dense colonies (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001) and is "sometimes very abundant" (Wagner et al. 1990). In the Kalalau Valley of Kauai, is "displacing the forest understory" (Lowry and Wood 2000). Rated one of Hawaii's "Most Invasive Horticultural Plants" by the Department of Land and Natural Resources (HI-DLNR 2001). Therefore, appears to cause significant structural changes in the understory layer.

3. Impact on Ecological Community Composition:Moderate significance
Comments: Forms dense colonies (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001) and is "sometimes very abundant" (Wagner et al. 1990). In the Kalalau Valley of Kauai, is "displacing the forest understory" (Lowry and Wood 2000). Rated one of Hawaii's "Most Invasive Horticultural Plants" by the Department of Land and Natural Resources (HI-DLNR 2001).

4. Impact on Individual Native Plant or Animal Species:Low significance/Insignificant
Comments: Although descriptions of general impacts on particular native species were found (e.g. "dense colonies have been found under mature cactus individuals, possible affecting recruitment (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001)), no concrete evidence that such impacts were disproportionate could be located.

5. Conservation Significance of the Communities and Native Species Threatened:High significance
Comments: Threatens no less than 22 Federally listed plant species, including 16 species on Oahu (Abutilon sandwicense, Alsinidendron trinerve, Chamaesyce kuwaleana, Diellia falcata, Lipochaeta lobata var. leptophylla, Lobelia monostachya, Tetramolopium filiforme, Bonamia menziesii, Euphorbia haeleeleana, Flueggea neowawraea, Gouania meyenii, Lobelia niihauensis, Nototrichium humile, Peucedanum sandwicense, Phyllostegia mollis, Schiedea hookeri) (USFWS 2003), 5 species on Kauai Kokia kauaiensis, Phyllostegia knudsenii, Myrsine linearifolia, Pritchardia napaliensis (USFWS 1995), and Diellia pallida, and 1 species, Harrisia fragrans, in Florida (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001). Also threatens the recently-discovered, extremely rare plant Tetraplasandra flynnii on Kauai (Lowry and Wood 2000).

Subrank II. Current Distribution and Abundance: Low

6. Current Range Size in Nation:Low significance
Comments: Occurs in central and southern Florida (Wunderlin and Hansen 2003) and on all of the main Hawaiian Islands except Ni'ihau and Kaho'olawe (Wagner et al. 1990).

7. Proportion of Current Range Where the Species is Negatively Impacting Biodiversity:Moderate significance
Comments: Threatens species of conservation concern in Florida (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001) and on at least Oahu and Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands (USFWS 1995, Lowry and Wood 2000, USFWS 2003).

8. Proportion of Nation's Biogeographic Units Invaded:Low significance
Comments: Approximately 3 ecoregions are invaded (including the "major" ecoregion of Hawaii), based on visual comparison of the generalized range and ecoregions map (The Nature Conservancy 2001).

9. Diversity of Habitats or Ecological Systems Invaded in Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: This species is somewhat drought tolerant (Weber 2003) and prefers a sun to partial shade light environment (Whitinger 2007). In Florida, it has been described as inhabiting "disturbed sites" (Wunderlin and Hansen 2003), but has also been found in several natural habitats, including coastal strand, shell mounds, hammocks (maritime, xeric, mesic, or rockland), and pine rockland (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001, Gann et al. 2007). Langeland and Stocker (2001) note that it is "often found along edges of natural areas, generally as a result of discarded landscape material." In Hawaii, Wagner et al. (1990) note that it is "naturalized and sometimes very abundant in low elevation, dry to mesic, disturbed areas", e.g. coastal dry shrublands on abandoned grazing lands dominated by the exotic Leucaena leucocephala. However, it threatens numerous species of conservation concern, which typically occur in at least partially intact habitats (native-dominated, but with a significant exotic component) (USFWS 1995, USFWS 2003). These communities are predominantly dry to mesic forest, sometimes dry to mesic shrubland, in a variety of topographic settings, including slopes, gulches, ridges, and cliffs, from 0-850 m (0-2800 feet) (USFWS 1995, USFWS 2003).

Subrank III. Trend in Distribution and Abundance: Medium/Low

10. Current Trend in Total Range within Nation:Low significance
Comments: This species' "potential for expansion" is rated "High" in southern Florida, but "Low" in central and northern Florida by Fox et al. (2006), suggesting that it is unlikely to expand its range further north in Florida. It does not appear to have spread to additional Hawaiian Islands recently.

11. Proportion of Potential Range Currently Occupied:Low significance/Insignificant
Comments: This tropical/subtropical species is only known to be hardy in zones 10a-11 in the US (Whitinger 2007); therefore, it appears that it may already occupy much of its potential generalized range in the US, although further spread within the counties it already occupies in south Florida is likely (Fox et al. 2006). This species naturalized prior to 1871 on Hawai'i (Wagner et al. 1990), so it likely already occupies much of its potential range in the Hawaiian Islands as well.

12. Long-distance Dispersal Potential within Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: Used as an ornamental (Weber 2003, Whitinger 2007). Can also be dispersed by people dumping excess cuttings and plants (garden waste) (Pickard 1984). Does not appear to have many morphological adaptations for long-distance dispersal; seeds are "minute" (Itow 2003), and plantlets produced along leaf margins typically drop to the ground below the parent plant (PIER 2006).

13. Local Range Expansion or Change in Abundance:Medium/Low significance
Comments: This species' "potential for expansion" is rated "High" in southern Florida, but "Low" in central and northern Florida by Fox et al. (2006). It also occurs in disturbed as well as native habitats (Wagner et al. 1990, USFWS 1995, Langeland and Stocker 2001, USFWS 2003, Wunderlin and Hansen 2003, Gann et al. 2007), suggesting that local abundance is unlikely to be decreasing. Therefore, at least in southern Florida, it is likely that local abundance of this species is increasing.

14. Inherent Ability to Invade Conservation Areas and Other Native Species Habitats:High/Moderate significance
Comments: On some Pacific Islands, this species has been observed to be shade tolerant and capable of invading the forest floor (Space and Imada 2004). In the Kalalau Valley of Kauai, it is "displacing the forest understory" (Lowry and Wood 2000). Also appears to invade other native-dominated forests in Hawai'i that harbor rare species (USFWS 1995, USFWS 2003), but these ecosystems have likely been subject to significant disturbance as evidenced by the presence of wild ungulates and numerous other exotic plant species. Similarly, the natural habitats it invades in Florida, such as xeric hammocks, harbor other exotic species as well (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden 2001).

15. Similar Habitats Invaded Elsewhere:Moderate significance
Comments: Widely established in many tropical and subtropical areas (Wagner et al. 1990), including temperate Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Cape Verde, Canary Islands and Madeira, Azores, Mascarenes, Seychelles, Galapagos, Melanesia and Polynesia (Weber 2003, USDA-ARS 2007). A "dominant invader" in Palau and the Galapagos Islands (SPREP 2000) and an "environmental weed" in Australia (Weber 2003). In the Galapagos, it invades "into natural forests, where it blankets the ground and replaces the natural herb layer" (Itow 2003). In Fiji, it is "naturalized on rocky coasts and slopes and sometimes in dry forest" and in Tonga it is "occasional in sandy or rocky areas near the sea" (PIER 2006). Globally, invaded habitats include forest margins, coastal heath, and rock outcrops (Weber 2003). Overall, it appears to have invaded a wider range of habitats globally than in the US, particularly rocky coasts and coastal heath.

16. Reproductive Characteristics:Moderate significance
Comments: Reproduces vegetatively from plantlets that form along the leaf margins and drop to the ground; also produces minute seeds (Itow 2003, Weber 2003, PIER 2006).

Subrank IV. General Management Difficulty: Low

17. General Management Difficulty:Medium/Low significance
Comments: Management can be accomplished by hand-pulling or foliar application of glyphosate + surfactant. Follow-up hand removal of leaves is necessary to prevent the production of new plants, rendering management of this species more time-consuming (Langeland and Stocker 2001, Fox et al. 2006). Pulling of older plants can be difficult, but new plants are easily removed by hand (Whitinger 2007).

18. Minimum Time Commitment:Low significance
Comments: Follow-up hand removal of leaves is necessary to prevent the production of new plants (Langeland and Stocker 2001, Fox et al. 2006).

19. Impacts of Management on Native Species:Low significance
Comments: The need for foliar application of glyphosate + surfactant to treat older plants means that some limited damage to associated natives is likely.

20. Accessibility of Invaded Areas:Medium/Low significance
Comments: Many of the Hawaii populations are apparently on slopes, gulches, ridges, and cliffs (USFWS 1995, USFWS 2003). Also, the horticultural use of this species means that some populations may be located on private land.
Authors/Contributors
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Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden. 2001. Conservation action plan: Harrisia fragrans. Online. Available: http://www.fairchildgarden.org/uploads/docs/Center_for_Tropical_Plant_Conservation/Conservation_Planning/CAP%20Harrisia%20frag%202003.doc (Accessed 2007)

  • Flora of North America Editorial Committee. 2009. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Vol. 8. Magnoliophyta: Paeoniaceae to Ericaceae. Oxford University Press, New York. xxiv + 585 pp.

  • Florida Deparmtnet of Environmental Protection Bureau of Invasive Plant Management (FLDEP). 2006. Upland Invasive Exotic Plant Management Program Fiscal Year 2005-2006 Annual Report. Online. Available: http://www.dep.state.fl.us/lands/invaspec/2ndlevpgs/pdfs/Uplands05-06.pdf (Accessed 2007).

  • Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council (FL-EPPC). 2005. Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council's 2005 List of Invasive Species. Online. Available: http://www.fleppc.org/list/05List.htm (Accessed 2006).

  • Fox, A.M., D.R. Gordon, J.A. Dusky, L. Tyson, and R.K. Stocker. 2006, October last update. IFAS assessment of the status of non-native plants in Florida's natural areas. Online. Available: http://plants.ifas.ufl.edu/assessment.html (Accessed 2006).

  • Gann, G.D., K.A. Bradley and S.W. Woodmansee. 2001-2007. The Floristic Inventory of South Florida Database Online. The Institute for Regional Conservation, Miami, FL. Online. Available: http://regionalconservation.org/ircs/database/search/QuickSearch.asp (Accessed 2007).

  • Hawaii State Department of Land and Natural Resources. 2001. Hawaii's most invasive horticultural plants. Available: http://www.state.hi.us/dlnr/dofaw/hortweeds/. (Accessed 2007)

  • Itow, S. 2003. Zonation pattern, succession process and invasion by aliens in species-poor insular vegetation of the Galapagos Islands. Global Environment Research 7(1): 39-58.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1999. A synonymized checklist and atlas with biological attributes for the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. First edition. In: Kartesz, J.T., and C.A. Meacham. Synthesis of the North American Flora, Version 1.0. North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, N.C.

  • Langeland, K.A., and R.K. Stocker. 2001. April-last update. Control of Non-native Plants in Natural Areas of Florida. Department of Agronomy, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. Online. Available: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.

  • Lowry, P. P., and K. R. Wood. 2000. A new, threatened species of Tetraplasandra (Araliaceae) from Kaua'i, Hawaiian Islands, and notes on its conservation status. Novon 10(1):40-44.

  • Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER). 2006, 12 October last update. Bryophyllum pinnatum. United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service Institute of Pacific Island Forestry. Online. Available: http://www.hear.org/Pier/species/bryophyllum_pinnatum.htm (Accessed 2007).

  • Pickard, J. 1984. Exotic plants on Lord Howe Island: distribution in space and time, 1853-1981. Journal of Biogeography 11: 181-208.

  • Space, J. C. and C. T. Imada. 2004. Report to the Republic of Kiribati on Invasive Plant Species on the Islands of Tarawa, Abemama, Butaritari and Maiana. Contribution No. 2003-006 to the Pacific Biological Survey. USDA Forest Service and Bishop Museum, Honolulu, Hawai'i.

  • The Nature Conservancy. 2001. Map: TNC Ecoregions of the United States. Modification of Bailey Ecoregions. Online . Accessed May 2003.

  • USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. 2007 last update. Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, MD. Online. Available: http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/index.pl (Accessed 2007).

  • USFWS [U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service]. 1995. Endangered and Threatened wildlife and plants: Proposed Endangered or Threatened status for nineteen plant species from the island of Kauai, Hawaii. Proposed Rule. Federal Register 60 (185): 49359-49377.

  • USFWS [U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service]. 2003. Endangered and Threatened wildlife and plants: Final designations or nondesignations of Critical Habitat for 101 plant species from the Island of Oahu, HI. Federal Register 68 (116): 35949-35998.

  • Wagner, W.L., D.R. Herbst, and S.H. Sohmer. 1990. Manual of the flowering plants of Hawaii. Univ. Hawaii Press and Bishop Museum Press, Honolulu. 1853 pp.

  • Weber, E. 2003. Invasive plant species of the world: a reference guide to environmental weeds. CABI Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts. 548 pp.

  • Whitinger, D. 2007. Dave's Garden: PlantFiles. Online. Available: http://davesgarden.com/pf/ (Accessed 2007)

  • Wunderlin, R.P. and B.F. Hansen. 2003. Guide to the Vascular Plants of Florida. 2nd edition. University Press of Florida, Tampa. 788 pp.

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