Fabaceae, the pea, bean or legume family family.
Plant: Slender climbing or prostrate plant to 24" long, with tendril-tipped compound leaves and tiny pink, pea-like flowers, often forming dense tangled clumps. Perennial.
Flowers: Tiny, pinkish or white with pink or purple stripes, 1/8"-1/4", pea-like, arising in pairs or singly from the leaf axils.
Leaves: Alternate, compound, with 10 or so paired, lanceolate to linear leaflets, 1/2"-3/4" long. Leaves tipped with a long tendril.
Fruit: Flat, pea-like pod, about 1/2" long.
Habitat: Fields, roadsides, waste places.
Also known as Smooth Vetch, this species is introduced from Europe.
It blooms earlier than some of the other vetches, and tends to form tangled, weedy mats with
scattered small and inconspicuous flowers.
Where to find it:
Scattered in lower meadow areas of the park especially along the northwest shore of the pond.