Common names: ngaio tree; false sandalwood; mousehole tree
Myoporum laetum (ngaio tree) is an evergreen shrub or small tree (family Myoporaceae) found along the coast of California and in the San Francisco Bay region. It favors coastal areas, woodlands and riparian areas. This landscape ornamental has white flowers with purple dots and reddish-purple fruits. Ngaio tree has escaped cultivation in many areas, and is commonly found near urban areas. It may crowd out native plants, growing to form dense stands. It is susceptible to damage from the introduced myoporum thrips (Klambothrips myopori; Thysanoptera: Phlaeothripidae), which is believed to have slowed its spread. A recently introduced thrips-resistant cultivar (Clean n Green) has also been evaluated as potentially invasive. Ngaio tree foliage contains toxic chemical compounds that can cause fatal liver damage in livestock, so grazing is not a control option. Mature plants are commonly treated by cutting at ground level and painting the stump with an herbicide.Cal-IPC Rating: Moderate?
CDFA Rating: None?
Plant Assessment Form - Information gathered by Cal-IPC on the impacts, rate of spread, and distribution of invasive plants in California. Does not include management information.
Weed Management Notes
- Management Notes - Information on management techniques and effectiveness from the University of California Cooperative Extension’s Weed Research & Information Center.
Cal-IPC Newsletter Articles
- Wildland Weed News. Cal-IPC. Vol 22, Issue 3
- Chinese pistache: Why isn’t it more invasive in California?. Rejmanek, Marcel. Vol 22, Issue 3
- Don’t sell a pest: A new partnership to prevent plant invasions through horticulture. Connick, Sarah; Gerel, Mike. Vol 13, Issue 2
- Roundup of Arundo projects reveals commitment, strategic weakness. Kelly, Mike. Vol 07, Issue 2
- Invasive New Zealand weeds: Our native plant invaders. Harris, Graham. Vol 06, Issue 4
Cal-IPC Symposium Presentations
Presentations are linked where available. Where a presentation is not available, find more information by reading the abstract in the Cal-IPC Symposia Archive.
- Partnering to prevent invasions of plants of horticultural origin. Connick, Sarah; Gerel, Mike (2004)
Other Myoporum laetum Information
- CalPhotos - Images of plants taken mostly in California.
- Calflora - Distribution map and records of this species in California.
- CalWeedMapper - Distribution map of this species in California with ability to determine regional priorities.
- EDDMapS - Distribution of this species in North America.
- GBIF - Global distribution information.
- Jepson Interchange - Information on this plant's taxonomy, biology, and distribution from UC Berkeley's Jepson Herbarium.
- USDA PLANTS Database - Information on identification and distribution, with links to websites in individual states.
- The Plant List - Global taxonomic resource and collaborative clearinghouse from Kew Gardens, the Royal Botanic Gardens, the Missouri Botanic Garden and others.