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Scientific Name

Melaleuca quinquenervia (Cav.) S. T. Blake (ITIS)

Common Name

Melaleuca, punktree, naiouli, cajeput tree, paper bark, broadleaf paper bark, broadleaf teatree, paperbark teatree, bottlebrush tree

Native To

Australia (Turner et al. 1997)

Date of U.S. Introduction

Early 1900s (Turner et al. 1997)

Means of Introduction

Used as an ornamental and for erosion control (Turner et al. 1997)


Degrades wetlands in several ways, including altering fire regimes, water table depth, vertical structure of plant communities, recruitment of native species, and light availability (Center et al. 2012)


Melaleuca, plants


Photo by Min B. Rayamajhi; USDA, Agricultural Research Service

Find more images


  • APHIS Publishes Environmental Assessment on Release of Lophodiplosis indentata for the Biological Control of Melaleuca

    • Dec 16, 2021
    • USDA. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

    • The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) to issue permits for the release of the insect Lophodiplosis indentata (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae) to biologically control Melaleuca quinquenervia (Myrtaceae) in the continental United States. Based on the environmental assessment and other relevant data, APHIS has reached a preliminary determination that the release of this control agent within the continental United States will not have a significant impact on the environment.

      The proposed action is intended to reduce the severity of environmental damage to wetlands from the invasive Melaleuca tree in the continental United States. Melaleuca is native to Australia, New Caledonia, and Papua New Guinea and was imported into Florida in the late 19th century. It has since established in Florida’s wetlands, dramatically disrupting normal water, fire, disturbance recovery, and nutrient cycles—as well as impacting the amount of light available to other plants. APHIS is making the environmental assessment available to the public for review and comment. All comments received on or before Jan. 16, 2022 will be considered. To review the environmental assessment and make comments: Go to and enter APHIS-2021-0049 in the Search field.

Distribution / Maps / Survey Status

Federally Regulated

  • Noxious Weeds Program

    • USDA. APHIS. Plant Protection and Quarantine.

    • Includes species listed as a Federal Noxious Weed under the Plant Protection Act, which makes it illegal in the U.S. to import or transport between States without a permit.


Selected Resources

The section below contains highly relevant resources for this species, organized by source.

Federal Government
State and Local Government