puncturevine USDA PLANTS Symbol: TRTE
U.S. Nativity: Exotic
Habit: Vines
Tribulus terrestris L.

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Taxonomic Rank: Magnoliopsida: Sapindales: Zygophyllaceae
Synonym(s): bullhead, caltrop, goathead, Mexican sandbur, puncture vine, Texas sandbur
Native Range: Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe ()

Puncturevine is an annual, low-spreading forb native to the Mediterranean. Leaves are opposite, hairy, 1-3 in. (2.5-7.6 cm) long, and divided into 8-18 oblong leaflets. Flowering occurs from midsummer to frost, when 5-petaled, yellow, ½ in. (1.27 cm) wide flowers develop singly in the axils of the leaves. Fruit are circular, spiny burs that split into 5 sections. Burs can cause injury to bicycle tires, bare feet, and even small truck tires. Plants invade roadsides, pastures, fields and other disturbed areas. Plants are toxic to sheep and other grazers.

Selected Images from Invasive.orgView All Images at Invasive.org


Plant(s); in flower
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Foliage;
Charles T. Bryson, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s);
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s);
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flower and fruit
Forest and Kim Starr, Starr Environmental, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flower and leaves
Forest and Kim Starr, Starr Environmental, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s);
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s); fruit
Forest and Kim Starr, Starr Environmental, Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s);
Steve Hurst, USDA NRCS PLANTS Database, Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s); Thorns
Utah State University Archive, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. Illustrated flora of the northern states and Canada. Vol. 2: 442.
USDA PLANTS Database, USDA NRCS PLANTS Database, Bugwood.org
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Feature(s); Burs stuck into tractor tire
Utah State University Archive, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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EDDMapS Distribution:
This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts and records obtained from USDA Plants Database. For more information, visit www.eddmaps.org
 


State(s) Where Reported invasive.
Based on state level agency and organization lists of invasive plants from WeedUS database.

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U.S. National Parks where reported invasive:
Chiricahua National Monument (Arizona)
Death Valley National Park (California)
Fort Bowie National Historic Site (Arizona)
Grand Canyon National Park (Arizona)
Lake Mead National Park (Nevada)
Scotts Bluff National Monument (Nebraska)



Invasive Listing Sources:
Faith Campbell, 1998
Jil M. Swearingen, Survey of invasive plants occurring on National Park Service lands, 2000-2007
Pacific Northwest Exotic Pest Plant Council, 1998
Tennessee Exotic Pest Plant Council