Cuscuta epithymum Convolvulaceae Dodder

Cuscuta epithymum 42kb

Description - This is a small parasitic plant which contains no chlorophyll, therefore has no green colouration. The plant appears as a mass of tiny red strings all over the Gorse which is its host. Small spherical bunches of little pale pink flowers appear in the Summer.

Habitat - On Gorse, Ulex europaeus, from which it derives all its nutrients, sometimes also on Thyme, Thymus polytrichus, or other low-growing plants, especially on the commons in the north of the island. It is quite common in the Channel Islands, mainly around the coast, but also found inland.

Comment - Sometimes a form is seen in which the red pigment is lacking, thus the stems are dull yellow colour. This occurs especially on the Dodder growing on Thyme, and is often seen at Port Soif, and on Herm Common.

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