small broomrape, hellroot
- Orobanche minor is a fleshy, herbaceous, annual, parasitic plant that grows up to 22 in. (55.9 cm) tall. It attaches to the roots of broadleaf hosts (especially Trifolium spp.). The fleshy stem is yellow to straw colored and sticky.
- Leaves are greatly reduced (vestigial), alternate and triangular shaped.
- Flowers, borne on terminal clusters, are snapdragon-like, with 0.5 in. (1.3 cm) long, purple-tinged petals. Flowering occurs in the winter and spring.
- This plant is highly prolific. Seeds are very small (dust-size) and remain viable for 10 or more years.
- Ecological Threat
- Orobanche minor is a Federal Noxious Weed and concern exists that it may spread to infest crops such as legume forages and leafy green vegetables. Heavy infestations can cause crop failure. It is native to the Middle East and was probably introduced into North America with contaminated seed.
- Sudie Daves Thomas, South Carolina Exotic Pest Plant Council and the Early Detection and Rapid Response (EDRR) System
- Oregon Department of Agriculture Plant Programs, Noxious Weed Control
- USDA NRCS PLANTS
- USDA ARS GRIN
Images from Bugwood.org