Dodder

Scientific Name:

Cuscata (taxonomic genus)

Type:

Parasitic Plant

Habitat:

Wide variety of temperate and tropical regions

Range:

Worldwide

Status:

No listed status

This species is

INVASIVE

to the Truckee Meadows.

Identification:

Dodders have yellow-orange vines that twist around stems of above ground shrubby and herbaceous plants, such as sagebrush or agricultural crops. The stems lack leaves but have small white flowers that grow in clusters fused to the stem.

Fast Facts:

  • Dodder plants have no roots and little chlorophyll, meaning they depend on their hosts for photosynthates (sugars/food), water, and minerals (aka a holoparasite).

  • After germinating in the soil, the seedlings can survive for 5-10 days while they “look” for a host plant to climb up.

  • Dodders have specialized structures called haustoria, which allow them to tap into the vascular system of host plants and collect water, food, and minerals.

Sources:

Contributor(s):

Emma Steer (research & content)

Alex Shahbazi (edits & page design)

Last Updated:

June 15, 2021, 10:37:31 PM