Massey Herbarium (Virginia Tech)
The Southeastern Regional Network of Expertise and Collections
National Science Foundation under award 1410069. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
The figworts (formerly Scrophulariaceae) are colorful members of the Virginia flora that sometimes parasitize other plants.
The figworts, aka scrophs, are striking plants that usually have bilaterally symmetric flowers. They employ a wide variety of life history strategies, including parasitizing other plants. For example, the diminutive beech drops (Epiphagus virginiana) is a parasite on beech trees. Several years ago many of the genera in the Scrophulariaceae were transferred to other families, especially the Orobanchaceae and Plantaginaceae. You can help us to understand the distribution and diversity of these charismatic plants while brushing up on the recent taxonomic changes in this group.