Cuscuta planiflora Ten.

Small-seeded Alfalfa Dodder

Fl. Napol. 3: 250 (1824-29) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Stems reddish. Inflorescence a compact axillary cluster, mostly 2–6 mm diam., subtended by an obtuse bract c. 1 mm long. Flowers 5-merous; pedicels 0–0.5 mm long; calyx 1.3–1.7 mm long, lobes unequal, broad-triangular, more or less acute, as long as or longer than tube; corolla 1.5–2 mm long, white or pinkish, lobes triangular, acute, c. equal to tube; filaments 0.2–0.4 mm long, shorter than or as long as anthers; scales subtending stamens ovate, shorter than or equal to corolla-tube, very shortly fringed; stigmas linear. Capsule subglobose, 1–1.5 mm diam., circumscissile; seeds to c. 1 mm long. Flowers mainly spring and summer.

*Gold, *OtP, *VVP. Also naturalised WA, SA. Native to Europe and the Mediterranean, and widely throughout the world. In Victoria, known from a few localities to the west of Melbourne, often parasitic on leguminous herbs. In Victoria some of the other hosts include Frankenia pauciflora, Lobelia pratioides, Selliera radicans and Wilsonia backhousei.

Source: Jeanes, J.A. (1999). Cuscutaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2018-12-28
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Asteranae
order Solanales
genus Cuscuta
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Cuscuta planiflora in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Cuscuta planiflora in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Otway Plain present introduced
Goldfields present introduced

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia