Field Dodder: Life Cycle and Interaction with Host Plants

  • Marija Sarić-KrsmanovićEmail author
Reference work entry
Part of the Reference Series in Phytochemistry book series (RSP)


Cuscuta as a generalist type of holoparasitic plant interacts with various host plants in different manners, and all Cuscuta species depend (absolutely) on host plants to complete their life cycle. Field dodder is a parasitic plant that attaches to stems and leaves of broadleaf plants, including weeds, field crops, vegetables, and ornamentals, across most agricultural regions of the world. Most hosts of Cuscuta plants are passive, only a few hosts are known to show clear resistance (e.g., Ipomoea sp.). Unlike other weeds occurring in anthropogenic habitats that have been well-studied in their taxonomic, biological, and ecological aspects, as well as their anatomical and physiological properties to some extent, the parasitic flowering species of the genus Cuscuta have been examined very scarcely despite the great damage that they are able to cause. More extensive research is required in order to develop new means for parasitic weed control. A basic research should identify new targets for control within the life cycle of the parasites and among their metabolic activities.


Field dodder Host plant Life cycle Metabolic activities 


chl a/b

Ratio of chlorophyll a to b


Days after infestation


Maximal fluorescence


Minimum fluorescence


Variable fluorescence


Maximum quantum efficiency of photosystem II


Hypersensitive-like response


Intensity of fluorescence


Relative chlorophyll content


Total chlorophyll content


Effective fluorescence yield of photosystem II



We acknowledge the funding of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology of the Republic of Serbia, Project III 46008.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Pesticides and Environmental ProtectionBelgradeSerbia

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