Canyon dodder is a parasitic viney plant lacking
chlorophyll that has fairly stout and somewhat fleshy orange stems and
long, slender white flowers. It can be differentiated from California
dodder (C. californica) which is
the other common dodder in Southern California by the length and shape
of the flowers and by the stamen filaments which are prominently exserted
in californica and absent or much shorter in subinclusa.
The flowers are 5-merous and 5-6mm long, sessile in small umbellate
clusters. The calyx is half the length of the corolla, which is
cylindric with erect to spreading ovate lobes and spoon-shaped appendages
about 1/16" long with finger-like divisions situated opposite the
stamens. This is another way that subinclusa can be told
apart from californica, which has appendages either 0 or very
short. The anthers are oblong, and sessile or subsessile. Canyon dodder
is common, mostly on shrubs in many plant communities to 5000', often
in forested areas near streams, blooming from June to October. These
pictures were taken along the Clamshell Motorway and in Monrovia Canyon
in the front range of the San Gabriels.
Click here for Latin name derivations: 1) Cuscuta 2) subinclusa.
Pronunciation: koos-KOO-ta sub-in-KLOO-sa.
Click here for Botanical