Thursday, 26 May 2016

Thursday..... Dodder, the clever world of parasitic plants.

Golden dodder (Cuscuta campestris). Common names;Angel's hair, beggar vine, field dodder, love vine, strangle vine, strangle weed,

The parasitic vine called dodder is the sniffer dog of the vegetable world. It contains almost no chlorophyll – the pigment that most plants use to make food – so to eat it must suck the sugary sap from other plants. Dodder uses olfaction to hunt down its quarry. It can distinguish potential victims from their smell, homing in on its favorites and also using scents emitted by unhealthy specimens to avoid them.
 (Science, vol 313, p 1964).

A distinctive yellow, golden or orange coloured parasitic plant. The short-lived leafless climbing stems are hairless thread-like. These stems produce small suckers which penetrate the host plant's stems or leaves. The plant also produces quantities of seed. Each small, creamy  flower may contain 4 seeds.

This  parasitic plant that is  known as a pest of crops, it also attacks a wide range of naturalised species and native plants.

This exotic, introduced parasitic plant has naturalised  throughout the coastal and sub-coastal regions of Australia. It is most abundant in south-eastern South Australia, along the Murray River and its tributaries), south-eastern Queensland and eastern New South Wales.


  1. Replies
    1. diane b. eww, yes, but a tough cookie. I have not seen it around here.

  2. Hi Titania, nice posting. Thanks for sharing about dodder.

    Have a nice day,regards.