Easily confused with : other
Broomrapes, of which there are several, but most are named after their specific host, such as Thyme Broomrape, Oxtongue 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.
Common Broomrape is sub-divided into 2 sub-species, each of which also has some varieties (one of which is now extinct) as well:
Orobanche minor ssp. minor is the common one and is not rare.
- (Orobanche minor ssp. minor)
- (var. flava)
- (var. compositarum)
- (Orobanche minor ssp. maritima) [RR]
- (var. hypochaeridis) - extinct [E]
It is not known if any of the above photos correspond to any of the above varieties or to ssp. maritima (unless labelled as such - but as yet there are no labels).
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].
See the pull-out table below for comparisons with other Broomrapes and their identifying and delineating characteristics.
OROBANCHE (BROOMRAPE) COMPARISON TABLE (shrunk)