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Araujia: Named after 19th century Portugese statesman and plant collector, Antonio de Matos Araujo.
moth plant, moth vine
Vascular - Exotic
Terrestrial. coastal, lowland cliff, bluff, waste places and other modified habitats (Timmins & MacKenzie 1995).
Rampant, evergreen vine to 10 m tall with smelly, milky sap. Stems twining, flexible, tough, downy, woody near base. Leaves opposite, 3-12 x 2-6 cm, dark green, hairless and dull above, greyish-downy below. Flowers bell-shaped, 20-25 mm diam, white, occ with pale pink streaks, usually in 2-4 clusters, Dec-May (can trap and kill insects). Distinctive pear-shaped choko-like pod, 10 x 7 cm, thick and leathery, containing kapok-like pulp, splits open dispersing many black, thistle down-like seeds.
The sticky sap is useful when identifying seedlings and tuberous roots. When fruiting the large seed pods are unmistakable.
December, January, February, March, April, May
Main Flower Colour
Autumn and winter (ARC, 1998).
S Brazil, Argentina
Reason For Introduction
Life Cycle Comments
Perennial. Seeds are viable for at least 5 years (Timmins & MacKenzie 1995).
Freely sets seed, 400 per follicle (Timmins & MacKenzie 1995).
Wind (Timmins & MacKenzie 1995).
The white latex substance in all parts of this plant is poisonous.
This page last updated on 5 Dec 2010