COMMON BROOMRAPE

Orobanche minor

Broomrape Family [Orobanchaceae]  

month8jun month8june month8jul month8july month8aug month8sep month8sept

status
statusZnative
flower
flower8mauve flower8violet
inner
inner8yellow
morph
morph8zygo
petals
petalsZ1
stem
stem8round

11th June 2011, Eire. Photo: © Paula O'Meara
A group parasitic on Clover.


11th June 2011, Eire. Photo: © Paula O'Meara
Stems reddish-purple up to 60cm high. Flowers in rough whorls around the stem.


24th June 2011, Kenfig NNR, South Wales. Photo: © Pam Murden
Plant lacks chlorophyll and is  parasitic on a range of other host plants, especially Clover, by which it is surrounded.


22nd Sept 2005, Winsford, Trent & Mersey Canal. Photo: © RWD
As yet un-opened flowers cluster at the top. Flowers tubular and curving downwards.


22nd Sept 2005, Winsford, Trent & Mersey Canal. Photo: © RWD
Stems reddish purple, flowers mauve-coloured flowers, whitish at the fringed and slightly flared opening. Whole plant covered in short glandular hairs.


22nd Sept 2005, Winsford, Trent & Mersey Canal. Photo: © RWD
Hairs have globular terminations. Flowers may be yellowish within. Each flower has one bract immediately below it.


22nd Sept 2005, Winsford, Trent & Mersey Canal. Photo: © RWD
Flowers are said to be two-lipped but they haven't yet flared out at the ends here...


11th June 2011, Eire. Photo: © Paula O'Meara
Flowers flared slightly open revealing upper and lower lips, hairless stamens and a stigma that is usually reddish-purple at the two bulbous ends. Beneath each flower is a long curving bract (upper four flowers).


11th June 2011, Eire. Photo: © Paula O'Meara
Flowers have dark violet veins. The upper lip is in two lobes, the lower lip in three lobes best seen in the lower central flower.


11th June 2011, Eire. Photo: © Paula O'Meara
There appear to be two 'tongue-like' 'petals' just below the two purple stigmas (upper central flower).


11th June 2011, Eire. Photo: © Paula O'Meara
Two upper lobes, three lower lobes, two inside 'tongues' and a stigma. Hairs have globules on the ends.


Easily confused with : other Broomrapes, of which there are several, but most are named after their specific host, such as Thyme Broomrape, Oxtongue Broomrape, Bedstraw Broomrape, Bean Broomrape, Knapweed Broomrape, Ivy Broomrape, Carrot Broomrape, Yarrow Broomrape, Hemp Broomrape or Thistle Broomrape, whereas Common Broomrape can host on many differing plants but especially Clover, Wild Carrot and others of the Daisy Family.

Three others like it are a subspecies: Orobanche minor subsp. maritima (Carrot Broomrape) and two variations: Orobanche minor var. compositarum and Orobanche minor var. flava.

Uniquely identifiable characteristics

Distinguishing Feature :

All Broomrapes are  Parasitic Plants, lacking chlorophyll to synthesize their own products and instead taking their nutrients from the roots of a host plant. In the case of Common Broomrape, this is with one of several different hosts, but especially the Clovers and Wild Carrot.

Unlike Thyme Broomrape which it can resemble, Common Broomrape is not scented, and is over twice as tall.

No relation to : Broom (Cytisus scoparius) or Butcher's Broom (Ruscus aculeatus) [plants with similar name belonging to differing families].


  Orobanche minor  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Orobanchaceae  

Distribution
 family8Broomrape family8Orobanchaceae

 BSBI maps
genus8Orobanche
Orobanche
(Broomrapes)

COMMON BROOMRAPE

Orobanche minor

Broomrape Family [Orobanchaceae]  

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