DODDER, Cuscuta spp. L. 1, dodder twined on legume plant; 2, flower; 3, seed pod; 4, seed. Annual, reproducing by seed. Dodder is a parasitic plant without chlorophyll. It obtains its food by twining around a host plant and sending rootlike projections into its stem. Stems are stringlike, smooth, yellow or orange, branching extensively, forming dense masses. Leaves absent or reduced to small bracts. Flowers numerous, small, white with 5 lobes, borne in clusters. Seed pod about 1/8 inch (3 mm) in diameter, with thin papery walls, containing 4 seeds. Seeds triangular in cross section, brown, with a roughened seed coat. Found principally on clovers, alfalfa, and lespedeza, although it can grow on many broad-leaved plants. It is difficult to remove the seeds from clover and alfalfa seeds. A number of similar species growing on various host plants are found in the region.