Cuscuta californica Hook. & Arn.

Family: Convolvulaceae

Pertinent Synonyms & Notes (particularly those used in California; go to GRIN for other synonyms)


Pertinent Common Names (particularly those used in California; go to GRIN for other common names)

California dodder

Primary Disseminule Type


Description (diagnostics are in brown)

Fruit a 1–4-seeded capsule, globose or ovoid-conic, tip pointed or not, 1.5–2.2 mm long x 1.2–2.5 mm diameter, with dried perianth parts still attached (± enclosed by corolla).

Seed obovate or widely elliptic to reniform or comma-shaped or otherwise irregular in outline, ± terete to laterally compressed, often flat or dimpled on 1+ sides, notched along margin where hilum occurs, 0.9–1.4 mm long x 0.8–1.2 mm wide x 0.7–1 mm thick. Surface dull (sparkly under magnification), rough (variously honeycombed or pitted), typically light to dark brown.

Hilar region a darkened marginal depression, ± circular, with a slit-like vascular scar.

Similar Species

Similar Species Comparison Chart

Risk Assessment (codes in yellow or red indicate cause for concern; assessments are current as of mid-2011; click AUQP, NZBORIC, or NZBPI for access to the most recent versions of these databases and possible assessment changes)