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Pereskia aculeata (Barbados gooseberry)

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Core Eudicots > Order: Caryophyllales > Family: Cactaceae > Genus: Pereskia

Native to tropical America. A serious invasive species in the coastal forests of KwaZulu-Natal and also naturalised in the Eastern Cape, Gauteng, Limpopo and Zimbabwe. It is a declared Category 1 invasive plant in South Africa.

Ecological interactions in southern Africa


  • Phenrica guerini (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). A leaf feeding beetle, released in 1991 and 1995 and although established, has caused only trivial damage to this weed (Klein 2011).



  • Klein H. 2011. A catalogue of the insects, mites and pathogens that have been used or rejected, or are under consideration, for the biological control of invasive alien plants in South Africa. African Entomology 19(2): 515-549.

Text by Hamish Robertson

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