The Distribution and Problems of Invasive Alien Plant, Mimosa diplotricha (Mimosaceae) in Nigeria
The Distribution and Problems of the Invasive Alien Plant, Mimosa diplotricha (Mimosaceae) in Nigeria
Invasive shrubs such as Mimosa diplotricha (Mimosaceae) that impact negatively on existing plant communities pose a threat to biodiversity, agriculture, and human livelihoods. The origin of the weed is traced to Brazil, its natural habitat ranges from southern Mexico to northern Argentina including the Caribbean islands. This leguminous vine has spread throughout Asia, Africa (Nigeria, Mauritius, and Reunion).
CHARACTERISTICS AND ECOLOGY
Mimosa is one of the most diverse genera of Mimosoid legumes, with over 500 species. Central Brazil is a key center of diversity for Mimosa most farmers consider M. diplotricha to be a pest, whereas others believe it has certain advantages. They consider that soil fertility and porosity better in M. diplotricha -free areas. According to the literature, the weed is a nitrogen (N) fixer.
Problems of M. diplotricha
Agriculture, conservation, and residential areas all suffer from this pest. Infestations were found on okra, maize, cassava, and plantain farms, as well as oil palm and coconut plantations.
Assessment show that the weed is not crop specific and might be a problem in any agricultural system. This weed species has a substantial economic impact on Nigerian ago-ecosystems, burying crops and reducing agricultural growth and development.
To keep the weed from spreading and invading further Nigeria's government and institutions should share information and experiences on the management of M. diplotricha and its ecological requirements with nations afflicted by the weed, such as Australia, Papua New Guinea, India, and Thailand.
Furthermore, international collaboration and communication with nations such as Australia and Papua New Guinea that have effectively managed and controlled the weed via biological control is vital to the successful management and control of M. diplotricha in Nigeria.