Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Hazel Dodder - Cuscuta coryli   Engelmann
Members of Convolvulaceae:
Members of Cuscuta with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Order Solanales » Family Convolvulaceae
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AuthorEngelmann
DistributionMostly a two-parted range in the state -- present in the lower Coastal Plain, and also in the Piedmont foothills and adjacent eastern Mountains close to the Blue Ridge Escarpment. Two records for the central and eastern Piedmont.

This species has a wide range, but it has been sparsely collected. It ranges from southern Canada south to SC, AL, and AZ.
AbundanceRare (presumably) in the lower Coastal Plain, and rare also in the Blue Ridge Escarpment zone, mainly in the southwestern Piedmont (foothills ranges). The NCNHP's State Rank of S1? seems too conservative, considering records for 10 counties; the website editors suggest a rank of S2?. This is a Significantly Rare species.
HabitatIn the western part of the state, it occurs in upland sites, mostly over high pH soils, where it grows along wooded borders, open woods, and rocky glades and barrens. However, coastally it occurs in wet clearings. It grows mainly on composites, but also on other herbaceous or woody plants.
PhenologyBlooms from late July to frost, and fruits shortly after flowering.
IdentificationSee Taxonomic Comments. The description from Gleason (1952): "Flowers 4-merous, about 2.5 mm. long, in dense or loose clusters, some or all distinctly pedicelled. Calyx about half as long as the corolla, its lobes acute. Corolla cylindric, its lobes narrowly triangular with acute inflexed tips, about as long as the tube."
Taxonomic CommentsThe species of Cuscuta all share a few similar features, and they are difficult to separate except by mostly small characters, best seen with a hand lens or microscope. Each is a parasitic vine, lacking roots or true leaves, and nearly all are orange or yellow in color, twining up its host plant with the use of tiny aerial "roots". The small white flowers are in clusters along the stem. These plants should be quite familiar as a group, often presenting a tangled mass of orange vines growing over other plants. See Weakley (2018) or other references for keys to assist in identification.
Other Common Name(s)None
State RankS1? [S2?]
Global RankG5?
State StatusSR-T
US Status
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USACE-emp
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