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Monotropsis facts for kids

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Monotropsis odorata.jpg
Conservation status

Vulnerable (NatureServe)
Scientific classification

Monotropsis is a monotypic genus of plants containing the single species Monotropsis odorata, also known as sweet pinesap or pygmy pipes. It is a member of the subfamily Monotropoideae of the family Ericaceae. It is native to the Appalachian Mountains in the south-eastern United States, and is viewed as being uncommon throughout its range.

Like all members of the subfamily, Monotropsis odorata does not contain chlorophyll; it is a myco-heterotroph, getting its food through parasitism upon fungi rather than photosynthesis. These fungi form a mycorrhiza with nearby tree species.

Monotropsis odorata has a sweet smell which has been likened to nutmeg, cinnamon or violets.

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