EPPO Global Database

EPPO Reporting Service no. 01 - 2020 Num. article: 2020/024

New data on alien plants from Sicily (IT)

New data on alien plants from Sicily is reported.  New records of Commelina communis, Euphorbia hypericifolia, Melia azedarach, Nicotiana tabacum and Xanthoceras sorbifolium are reported.

  • Commelina communis (Commelinaceae) is native to Asia and recorded as a naturalized or casual alien species in Italy and other European regions.  The species has also been recorded in eastern North America.  In Sicily, the species was observed in Palermo in 2017 on the edge of a road.
  • Euphorbia hypericifolia (Euphorbiaceae) is native to the Southern USA and Central and South America.  The species is recorded as invasive in Singapore, Taiwan and a number of Oceanian islands (e.g. French Polynesia and New Caledonia).   Within the EPPO region, it is reported in Belgium, Israel, Italy, Greece and Spain.  It is also recorded as invasive in Hawaii (USA).  The species is reported as major weed in sugarcane and soybean in Peru.  In Sicily, the species is reported to be associated with urban areas particularly in the city of Catania, Trapani and Marinella di Selinunte.  
  • Melia azedarach (Meliaceae) is a species of tree native to Southern Asia.  The species has been reported as invasive in a number of regions globally, including North and South America and South Africa.  The species is also recorded as naturalizing in Algeria. New records in Sicily are from the northern slopes of Monte Pellegrino where a small population has been observed.  
  • Nicotiana tabacum (Solanaceae) has been widely introduced into many regions of the world for cultivation. It is recorded as invasive in Chile, Japan, the Galapagos Islands, a number of Oceanian islands (e.g. Fiji, New Caledonia), and is reported as invasive in Hungary and naturalized in the Canary Islands (ES) and the United Kingdom.   In Sicily the species has been reported from Mazara del Vallo and recently a population was found inside a former geriatric institute in the centre of Trapani.  
  • Xanthoceras sorbifolium (Sapindaceae) is native to China and has been introduced in other regions as a garden ornamental.  The species has been recorded in Palermo in the park of Villa Whitaker in Malfitano, where a population occupies a small uncultivated area.


Campisi P, Raimondo FM, Spadaro V (2019) New floristic data of alien vascular plants from Sicily. Flora Mediterranea 29, 263-267.