Ontario Wildflowers website

Conopholis americana

Other common names: American Cancer Root, Cancer Root

Other scientific names: Orobanche americana

French names: Conopholis d'Amérique

Family: Broom-rape Family (Orobanchaceae)

Distinctive features: No leaves; pale yellow colour (lacks chlorophyll).

Similar species:
  •   Indian Pipe (Monotropa uniflora) - Much thinner stem; pale white; has a single flower at the top of the stem.

  •   Pinesap (Hypopitys monotropa) - Much thinner stem; closer in appearance to Indian Pipe.

Flowers: Summer;  Green/Brown, Yellow;  Irregular flowers;  Waxy-looking.

Leaves: None

Habitat: Forests

Books: Newcomb's Wildflower Guide: 18    Peterson's Field Guide to Wildflowers: 122, 392    ROM Field Guide to Wildflowers of Ontario: 316   

Native/Non-native: Native

Notes: Parasitic on roots of trees, in particular oaks.

Origin and Meaning of Names:
 Scientific Name: americana: American

Photographs: 167 photographs available, of which 11 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

These plants have no chlorophyll. They instead obtain their nutrients from the roots of trees, usually oak and beech.

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

Just coming up in the spring.

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

Larger plant; the flowers aren't yet open.

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

A nice little "grove" of Squawroot (Conopholis americana).

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

Closeup of open flowers.

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

Remnants of the plant in late summer.

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

In January the remnants are still visible (if there's no snow!).

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

Closer view of a plant remnant in mid-winter.

Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

And a closeuup of a winter plant.

Range map for Squawroot (Conopholis americana)

PLEASE NOTE: A coloured Province or State means this species occurs somewhere in that Province/State.
The entire Province/State is coloured, regardless of where in that Province/State it occurs.

(Range map provided courtesy of the USDA website and is displayed here in accordance with their Policies)