Orobanchaceae: Broomrape Family — Castilleja (Paintbrush & Owl’s-clover)
Members of the broomrape family are all parasites. The Aphyllon (formerly Orobanche) genus is fully parasitic. Its members have no green leaves capable of photosynthesis, therefore they can’t use sunlight for energy. Others, like Castilleja and Pedicularis, are hemiparasitic, meaning they have photosynthetic green leaves, but also derive some of their nutrients from the roots of nearby plants.
Castilleja fall into two groups, those with bright red, orange or yellow flowers but without a 3-pouched lower lip (the Paintbrushes), and those with a 3-pouched lower lip but flowers which are a variety of colors, but not bright red (the Owl’s-clovers).