Datura stramonium (Jimson weed, jimsonweed), is a highly toxic and hallucinogenic plant belonging to the Solanaceae family. It is native to North America but can now be found in many parts of the world as an introduced species. This plant has a long history of use in traditional medicine, spiritual rituals, and recreational drug use, although its use is extremely dangerous due to its toxic nature. In the Hawaiian Islands, it is naturalized on the islands of Kaua’i, O’ahu, Moloka’i, Maui, and Hawai’i, and is primarily a weed of dry, disturbed sites, cultivated areas, pastures, and rangelands, but is not reported to be a significant weed of natural areas.
High Risk Traits:
- Broad climate suitability
- Thrives and spreads in regions with tropical climates.
- Naturalized on Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Maui, and Hawai'i (Hawaiian Islands) and widely naturalized elsewhere.
- A disturbance and agricultural weed of many crops worldwide
- Other Datura species are invasive weeds.
- Allelopathic properties
- Unpalatable to browsing and grazing animals
- Toxic to animals (if accidentally ingested) and people.
- Tolerates many soil types.
- Reproduces by seeds only.
- Hybridizes with other Datura species.
- Annual life cycle, reaching maturity in one growing season.
- Seeds dispersed by water, as a crop contaminant, and in soil stuck to machinery and animals.
- Prolific seed production (30,000/year)
- Seeds may form a persistent seed bank (up to 40 years)
Low Risk Traits:
- Unarmed (no spines, thorns, or burrs)
- Grows best in high light environments (dense shade may inhibit spread)
- Herbicides may provide effective control.
- Mechanical control may also be effective.