(family Plantaginaceae, subfamily Rhinanthoideae)
A genus of annual herbs, with small, opposite or alternate leaves, which are hemiparasitic on grasses. The bisexual flowers are usually white, blue, or pink, and are held in the upper leaf axils. They are sessile and often appear to form a terminal spike with reduced leaves between each flower and the next. The bell-shaped calyx is 4-lobed. The upper tip of the corolla is incurved, with 2 reflexed lobes; the lower lip is 3-lobed. There are 4 stamens. The ovary is superior, with 2 fused capsules, 2 locules, and a single style. The fruit is a dry capsule with numerous small seeds. The species hybridize readily. There are about 450 species, found in all temperate regions of the world.
Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry.