Asparagus setaceus

Asparagus setaceus (Kunth) Jessop

Common Names: Asparagus Fern, Asparagus Grass, Lace Fern, Climbing Asparagus

Family: Asparagaceae

Habit: Asparagus setaceus grows as a perennial climbing shrub/vine to 3 m in length (usually shorter) with round stems.  The cladophylls are arranged in whorls of 10-20 units, each up to 8 mm in length, filiform with an acuminate apex. There are spiny leaf scales along the stem.

The complete, perfect, actinomorphic flowers are arranged in racemes in leaf axils.  The calyx has 3 white, unfused sepals. The corolla has 3 unfused white petals. There are 6 unfused stamens.  The superior ovary has 3 locules and numerous ovules. The fruit is a blue/black berry at maturity.

Habitat: Asparagus setaceus grows in Human Altered environments (yards, gardens, abandoned fields) and has become weedy in the understory in Dry Broadleaf Evergreen Formations (coppice).

Distribution: Asparagus setaceus is NOT native to the Lucayan Archipelago but occurs on many of the island groupings. It is native to eastern central/southern Africa but is now widespread as an ornamental and has spread as a weedy/invasive species.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Asparagus setaceus is not known to be used medicinally in the Lucayan Archipelago.

Asparagus setaceus is used in the horticultural industry.