Squaw Root
(American Squawroot - Cancer Root)
Conopholis americana
Orobanchaceae (Broom-Rape) Family


Copyright material Ann Biggs-Williams

Squaw Root is an upright parasite that grows on oak roots; lacks chlorophyll. Its preferred habitat is wooded slopes of oak forests. The plants takes nourishment from the roots of oak trees, but does no harm to the host tree. Distribution is occasional in the Escambia region.

The leaves are overlapping scales.

Flowers are a terminal spike. Each flower is yellow in color and emerge from beneath the pointed scales, subtended by a bract similar to the leaf scale. The calyx is irregular in form. The corolla is two-lipped, with the upper lip notched and the lower lip in three parts; four stamens. Flowers occur in late spring.

Fruit is a capsule.

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