T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network

Oxalis latifolia (Fishtail oxalis)

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Spermatophyta
Subphylum: Angiospermae
Class: Dicotyledonae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Oxalidales
Family: Oxalidaceae
Genus: Oxalis
Species: O. latifolia
Binomial name: Oxalis latifolia
Synonyms: Oxalis vallicola, Ionoxalis vallicola, Oxalis vallicola
Common names: Broadleaf woodsorrel, Fishtail oxalis, Pink shamrock, Purple-flowered oxalis, Shamrock, Garden pink-sorrel

Oxalis latifolia is a species of flowering plant in the wood sorrel family. Its native range is in New Mexico through Mexico and Central America to northern South America. It is known on most other continents as an introduced noxious and invasive weed. In New Zealand is one of the more troublesome oxalis species in horticulture.

Oxalis latifolia is a stemless, perennial herb with a waxy-white taproot > 6 cm long. It usually reproduces vegetatively, through bulbs and via stolons which grow outwards to produce small bulbils at their extremities.
Oxalis latifolia spends winter in dormancy and re-establishes from its bulbs in spring. The sugars stored in the bulbs allow the foliage to be pushed up successfully through most mulches and through most residual herbicides.
When seeds are produced, they are "shot" 20 to 40 cm from a spherical to longitudinal capsule when its valves split open.
The leaves arise on long petioles (>25 cm long) from ground level. Each leaf group is made up of three smooth, triangular shaped leaflets about >5 centimetres wide. They have straight edges, rounded corners and an apex indented up to 1/3 the leaflet.
The inflorescence is an umbel of >15 flowers, Each individual flower is borne on 1-2 cm long stalk. Each flower has five, pinkish, overlapping petals 1 cm long, 5 sepals, each with two orange coloured glands at its tip, 10 stamens that are joined near the base and an ovary with 5 styles.

Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/