Scaevola taccada

Scaevola taccada (Gaertn.) Roxb.

Common Names: White Ink Berry, Hawaiian Sea Lettuce, Sea Lettuce

Family: Goodeniaceae

Habit: Scaevola taccada grows as shrub to 4 m occasionally rooting at the nodes when buried by sand to create large hedges. The leaves are arranged alternately to 25 centimeters long and 10 centimeters wide, with a notched leaf apex. The blades are ovate/obovate/oblanceolate. There are white hairs in the axils and branch tips.

The complete, perfect, zygomorphic flowers are in cymes arising in leaf axils. The calyx has 5 fused, green sepals subtended by 2 bracts. The corolla splits forming an apparent half flower appearance and has 5 fused pinkish white petals covered with hairs at their base. There are 5 functional stamens fused to the side of the corolla. The inferior ovary with 2 locules and 2 ovules. The fruit is a drupe turning white at maturity.

Habitat: Scaevola taccada grows in Dunes and Human Altered environments.

Distribution: Scaevola taccada is NOT native to the Lucayan Archipelago. It is native to the South Pacific and Hawaii.

Now occurring as NON-NATIVE INVASIVE species throughout the Lucayan Archipelago, Caribbean, and Florida.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic Usage: Scaevola taccada is not known to be used medicinally in the Bahamian Archipelago.

Scaevola taccada is a highly destructive invasive species that outcompetes native vegetation and degrades coastal systems through a reduction in biodiversity and coastal erosion.