[The Broomrape Family in the Columbia River Gorge of Oregon and Washington]

Naked Broomrape, One-flowered Broomrape, Purple Broomrape

Aphyllon purpureum

Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi

Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) - Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

A mass of naked broomrape (var. purpurea) as seen at left at Catherine Creek in the Columbia River Gorge..........April 9, 2009. In this case, the basal leaves of their host plants (Saxifraga integrifolia) can be seen scattered amongst the stems of the naked broomrape. The photo at right shows naked broomrape with leaves of a possible host, a prairiestar (Lithophragma sp.) at its base. Seen at Catherine Creek, Columiba River Gorge.....March 17, 2021.

Frontal view of Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) The photo at right shows a close-up frontal view of the corolla of naked broomrape (var. purpurea). Note the numerous gland-tipped hairs on the inner surface of each corolla lobe.
Characteristics:

Naked broomrape is an attractive perennial wildflower with single,erect floral pedicels from 5-15 cm high. The main stem is 0.5-2 cm long and is typically buried under the soil. The herbage is typically finely glandular-hairy.

The inflorescence consists of 1-3 flowers on long pedicels. The calyx is 6-12 mm long with the calyx tube from 2-4 mm long and the subequal lobes from 4-9 mm long. The corolla is 15-25 mm long and yellowish to purplish in color. The tube is curved with the lobes measuring 2-7 mm long with rounded, finely fringed tips. The anthers are 0.9-12 mm long, ranging from glabrous to woolly-pubescent.

Naked broomrape is parasitic on many saxifrages, sedums and members of the Asteraceae.


Former Varieties of Naked Broomrape:

variety occidentalis: Flowers yellow to purplish with the throat not much expanded. Limb is small and does not expand much. The corolla measures 1.5-2.5 cm long. The anthers are glabrous.

variety purpurea: Flowers purplish with the throat fairly expanded and spreading. The limb is large and expands widely. The corolla measures 2-3.5 cm long. The anthers are woolly.


Habitat:

Naked broomrape may be found in open, moist grasslands or occasionally in moist woodlands from the lowlands to moderate elevations in the mountains.


Range:

Naked broomrape may be found from the Yukon south to southern California and east to Newfoundland and hence south to Florida.

In the Columbia River Gorge it may be found between the elevations of 100'-3000' between Stevenson, WA and Biggs, OR.


Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) - Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

Naked broomrape (var. purpurea) with its wide throat and hairy anthers as seen along the Memaloose Trail east of Mosier, OR........April 21, 2017.

Close-up frontal view of a flower of Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) - Close-up sideview of a flower of Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)- Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

Additional close-ups of naked broomrape (var. purpurea) as seen with northwestern saxifrage (Saxifraga integrifolia var. claytoniifolia) in moist meadows along Rattlesnake Creek, near Rattlesnake Falls, Klickitat County, WA..........May 28, 2011.

Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) - Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

Close-up images of the internal flower parts of naked broomrape (var. purpurea) as seen at Catherine Creek.........April 19, 2017.

Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

A nice, variegated bloom of naked broomrape (var. occidentalis) as seen in the Columbia Hills State Park east of Eightmile Creek.........April 14, 2013.

Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) - NNaked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

Early blooming naked broomrape as seen at Catherine Creek, Columbia River Gorge.........March 3, 2015.

Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) - Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

Naked broomrape blooming on one of the mossy benches at Mitchell Point, several miles west of Hood River, Oregon...........April 19, 2015.


Naked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi)

Naked broomrape found on a vernally moist bench above Interstate 84 about one-half mile west of the Twin Tunnels, Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area..........April 4, 2015.

NNaked Broomrape, Purple Broomrape: Aphyllon purpureum (Synonyms: Orobanche poryphyrantha, Orobanche sedi, Orobanche uniflora ssp. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. minuta, Orobanche uniflora var. occidentalis, Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea, Orobanche uniflora var. sedi) probably parasitizing the adjacent northwest saxifrage (Saxifraga integrifolia var. integrifolia).

Photo above of Orobanche uniflora var. purpurea with one of its hosts, Saxifraga integrifolia var. integrifolia at Catherine Creek, Columbia Gorge Scenic Area.......March 30, 1991.

Paul Slichter