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Asian Copperleaf (Acalypha australis L.)

Also known as Asian three-seeded mercury.

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An annual native to East Asia, this species has been widely introduced into Europe and has also expanded its range considerably in Asia.

Range - Expand

Introduced or Not Present

This map is based on our research. We have checked its accuracy to Level 3 ecoregions. Although this plant occurs somewhere in each of these regions, it may only occur in a small part of some or all of them.

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Rhomboid Mercury (Acalypha rhomboidea)
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In its native range, prefers open, disturbed lowland habitats. In North America it has mostly been reported in or near anthropogenic habitats, including in cultivated fields, waste ground, roadsides, sunny riverbanks, suburban gardens, and cracks in walls.

It is able to survive in a range of soil textures, including sandy, loamy, clay, and rocky or gravely soils.

In North America, it is found in the area around New York City, into nearby areas of New Jersey and long island. It is locally common in this area. It has also been observed in Black Hawk County, Iowa, New Castle County, Delaware, and in Oregon.

The full potential of this plant to colonize and survive habitats and its ability to compete with similar species in North America is unknown. Currently, in North America, found in agricultural fields and in urban and suburban areas.


Used as a medicinal plant in east Asia.

Numerous Acalypha species occur in North America; all of the widespread ones are native. Of these, A. rhomboidea is most common and widespread.


This plant may be spread due to human agricultural practices, when the seed gets mixed into grain harvests. It has the potential to survive in a large portion of North America, and people have expressed caution about its potential to become a major agriculture weed, especially following observation of a large population of it in a corn field in Iowa.

Acalypha australis (Asian Copperleaf) | USDA PLANTS Database (About This Site)

Asian Copperleaf | iNaturalist (About This Site)

Acalypha australis | CABI Invasive Species Compendium (About This Site)

Acalypha australis | Biota of North America Project (BONAP) (About This Site)

Acalypha australis L. | Plants of the World Online (POWO) (About This Site)

Acalypha australis | NatureServe Explorer (About This Site)

Acalypha australis | Flora of North America (About This Site)

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Photo © Daniel Atha, Public Domain.
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