Wildflowers: Parasitic Woody Plant ID Please

Discussion in 'Plants: Identification' started by Pitter, Jan 6, 2022.

  1. Pitter

    Pitter Active Member 10 Years

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    In Colombia. What is this parasitic that grows on my flowering garden shrubs?
     

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  2. Silver surfer

    Silver surfer Generous Contributor 10 Years

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    Hmm!
    I hesitate to reply as you may well have thought about this already.
    What is the shrub ?
    Could it possibly be reversion of that shrub, which is growing really strongly with larger healthier foliage?
     
  3. Pitter

    Pitter Active Member 10 Years

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    Thank you Silver. It grows on a large flowering woody shrub they call biflora here. I'm not sure what the scientific name is as there seem to be a variety of plants with that name but I think it is an azalea. It also grows on an orange flowered Honeysuckle I have and a rhododendron. And now that I think of it I doen't see it growing on any native tree or shrub species.
     
  4. Silver surfer

    Silver surfer Generous Contributor 10 Years

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    Maybe we could concentrate on just one plant at a time..eg the Rhododendron biflora ???.(Azaleas are classed as Rhododendrons)
    OR the Orange flowered Lonicera...honeysuckle. (Is it a climber or a shrubby one.)

    A. First agree on an accurate id ...using clear pics to show detail ... general shape/size, the leaves and flowers.
    B. THEN try taking it a step further by showing us the parasite growing on plant A.....with clear pics of that.
     
  5. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    @Pitter, are you talking about the light-coloured stuff in the background with the appearance of Spanish Moss, Tillandsia usneoides , at the upper left of the photo and the dark stuff that's like it on the limbs at the upper right? If it is Tillandsia, it would be an epiphyte, not a parasite. So then, @Silver surfer, would it matter what it's growing on?
    It would help to see closer photos. Well, it would help someone who knows something about this.
     
  6. Silver surfer

    Silver surfer Generous Contributor 10 Years

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    Well spotted.
    I hadn't even noticed that!
    Tillandsia usneoides....Spanish Moss,
    An air plant ..grows on anything.
     
  7. Pitter

    Pitter Active Member 10 Years

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    Wendy in the photo above I am talking about the ovoid leaves growing alternately along the stem with the underside colored light purple.
    @Silver surfer : Ok I can not access the parasite where it is growing on the the three above mentioned shrubs as it's too high. However here are additional photos of other woody plants, also not native that the parasite seems to attack with a vengeance. I don't know what the plants are as they were planted by the former owners but likely they are from Africa. In the first two photos below one can see a dense cluster of filaments or rootlets glommed onto to the green stalk of the non native plant. The stems or branches of the parasite show as light gray. Next a photo of a parasite stem that I pulled away showing the tendrils that seem to be produced anywhere on the stem that it comes in contact with the non native plant. Following those I show a trunk completely bent over by the parasite. It is a trunk of the plants in the next photo. I don't know if you would call them trees or what but some are at least five meters tall.
     

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  8. togata57

    togata57 Contributor 10 Years

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    Dodder? (Cuscuta sp)

    The native range of this species
    [C. campestris] is obscure. It is thought to be native to North America (Canada, USA and Mexico) and parts of the Caribbean. It is possibly also native to parts of South America.

    Factsheet - Cuscuta campestris (Golden Dodder)
     
  9. vitog

    vitog Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    It's certainly not Dodder. Its growth habit resembles the leafy mistletoes, but they have opposite leaves, not alternate. I scanned through this interesting site: Introduction to Parasitic Flowering Plants but couldn't find anything obvious. The table at the end lists lots of possibilities that need more research.
     
  10. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    The plants in photos 1 and 5 in posting #7 seem to be Dracaena, maybe two different ones. The leaves in photo 1 look convincingly like Dracaena at the upper left, with the one leaf from the plant in question.
    @Pitter, you'd have said if you'd seen flowers, right?
    I wonder if it could be some sort of orchid.
     
  11. Silver surfer

    Silver surfer Generous Contributor 10 Years

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    This is now getting complicated as there are now several different plants shown.
    Going back to 1st pic.
    You say it is a parasitic plant.
    The new growth appears to be pink/purple.
    Please can we see clear close ups pics to show .
    A.The mystery plant.
    B. Where it is attached to the other plant.
    C. Close up pics of the plant it is attached to.
     
  12. Pitter

    Pitter Active Member 10 Years

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    I will add that it appears to be epiphytic and I suspect it too is not native as I've never seen it anywhere but on these non native shrubs/trees. I pulled one out that appeared to be rooted under a ceramic roof tile on my roof. It is represented by the first two photos. Ok then a close up of the mystery plant. Next one of the plants (perhaps Dracaena as suggested by wcutler) it is glommed on to. Then showing a stem with the filiments or rootlets that attach to the host plant. These are very strong. And finally a photo showing it hanging down from the Rhododenron.
     

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  13. Pitter

    Pitter Active Member 10 Years

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    Opps errant click.
    The second photo in the first group of five shows the tangled mass of filaments where the mystery plant is attached to the host
     

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  14. vitog

    vitog Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    It doesn't resemble an orchid, but an epiphyte is a good possibility.
     
  15. Silver surfer

    Silver surfer Generous Contributor 10 Years

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    _DSC1402.JPG DSC03035.JPG

    Maybe Marcgravia sp.?????

    Quote wiki....
    "Marcgravia is a genus of vines. It was named for George Marcgraf who first saw it on a voyage to Brazil. Marcgravia is classified as a sub-parasitical shrub"

    Marcgravia - Wikipedia

    Marcgravia purple leaves - Google Search

    Sorry but so many different plants in one thread can get rather messy.
    So I just concentrated on one.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2022
  16. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I found one photo that seemed similar, of of Marcgravia azreal, but that is not a species mentioned in the Wikipedia article:
    (4) Glass Box Tropicals - Posts | Facebook
    It links to photos at Marcgravia sp. 'Azreal'
    It also seems to have less of the shingling aspect with leaves arranged in a flat plane, that Wikipedia says is characteristic.
    These are photos that come up for M. dressleri, which Wikipedia says is found in Colombia, but none of these photos is identified as that species on the actual photo page.
    marcgravia dressleri - Bing images

    @Silver surfer, you're thinking that there are a lot of different lianas, not just a single one?
    @Pitter, you seem to be thinking it's the same thing growing everywhere, is that right? That one being sold as M. azreal does have a juvenile leaf form.
     
  17. Pitter

    Pitter Active Member 10 Years

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    Silver surfer likes this.

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