Tribulus terrestris

Tribulus terrestris_C254-03
Photo: UC Davis Weeds of California

Synonyms: Tribulus bimucronatus; Tribulus lanuginosus; Tribulus saharae; Tribulus terrestris var. sericeus

Common names: puncture vine; puncturevine, goat's head

Tribulus terrestris (puncture vine) is an annual herb (family Zygophyllaceae) with yellow-white flowers and narrow hairy leaves found all over California. It is native to the Mediterranean. It favors grasslands and dunes. It propagates by seed. Seeds are dispersed via water, wool, vehicles and agricultural activities.

Cal-IPC Rating: Limited?

CDFA Rating: -*?


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.

Species ID Card

Invasive Species ID Card - To support field identification of early detection species, Cal-IPC has designed a set of Species ID cards that can be downloaded, printed double-sided, and trimmed to size.

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

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.

Other Tribulus terrestris 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.
  • 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.
  • Additional photos

    Tribulus terrestris_flower, leaves, and stem_copyright2010_NealKramer
    Tribulus terrestris (puncture vine) flower, leaves, and stem. Photo: &#169 2010 Neal Kramer
    Tribulus terrestris_fruit, stem, and leaf_ZoyaAkulova
    Tribulus terrestris (puncture vine) fruit, stem, and leaf. Photo: Zoya Akulova
    Tribulus terrestris_growth habit_JeanPawek
    Tribulus terrestris (puncture vine) growth habit. Photo: Jean Pawek