DR KEITH WHEELER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR KEITH WHEELER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Plant parasite. Polarised light micrograph of a transverse section through a plant stem (left) entwined by the common dodder (Cuscuta sp.) parasitic plant (round, right). The stem of the dodder wraps around the host stem and penetrates it using haustoria (outgrowths, dark pink). The dodder cannot make its own food as it has little or no cholorophyll, and can't absorb water as it has no roots. It therefore sucks sugars, minerals and water from the phloem (dark brown) and xylem (blue) of the host through the haustoria. Magnification: x103 when printed 10 centimetres wide.
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