Common Vetch

Common Vetch
Common Vetch. Vicia sativa.
Fabaceae, the pea, bean or legume family.

Plant: Ascending or climbing, slightly hairy, vine-like plant to 3'-4', with compound leaves and pink, pea-like flowers arising singly or in pairs from the leaf axils. Annual.
Flowers: Pink to purple, pea-like flowers, 1/2"-1", borne singly or in pairs in the leaf axils.
Leaves: Alternate, compound, tendril-tipped, usually with 10-12 narrowly elliptical leaflets. Leaflet tips are notched with a small spike.
Fruit: Pea-like pod, about 1" long.
Blooming: May-June
Habitat: Fields, roadsides.

Comments: Also known as Garden Vetch. This annual, native to Europe, is grown as a forage plant. Escaped, it is sometimes a weed. Like other legumes, it fixes nitrogen, though it is not as effective as some others.

Where to find it: I have seen this plant only around the small pond across Westfall road from the main park.