Showing 3 types of GROUND PEARLS
Native to Australia, and first found in the U.S. in California around 1868 as a hitchhiker on acacia plants. Within 10 years it was a major pest on citrus in the west, and now is found worldwide on many kinds of plants. Because of the serious economic nature of this pest a major effort was made to find natural controls, leading to the discovery of Vedalia ladybird beetles that effectively preyed on it in California. When these predatory beetles were later sent to Florida the shipment included some of the scales, inadvertently introducing the pest to that state and its citrus industry. It is now found along the southern states from California to North Carolina.
Some species likely native to North America, but others found in Australia. In the U.S. they have been found in the southwest states and the southeast states.
Uncertain, but possibly native to North America.