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Strange plant in Virginia woods

Posted by baliset 6 (My Page) on
Tue, May 18, 10 at 7:44

A few of us were mushroom hunting near Lexington, VA, the weekend of May 1 and found a white, spiky plant with what looked like flowers all over it growing on a hill in mostly shade. The leaf litter was deep, at least 4 inches. We found them in clumps and singly. Does anyone know what it is?

I posted pics on my gardening blog, but no one knew what they were.

Thanks! We're really curious what it is.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pictures of mystery plant

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Strange plant in Virginia woods

I just discovered the same plant last week in nearby woods. I, too, would love to know what it is. Not in my wildflower book.

RE: Strange plant in Virginia woods

I Believe that is: Conopholis americana
An interesting species that is parasitic on oak trees, in the family Orobanchaceae.

RE: Strange plant in Virginia woods

Common name of Squaw Root but also called cancer root. Bears are supposed to eat them.

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