Crown Vetch

Crown Vetch
Crown Vetch. Coronilla varia.
Fabaceae, the pea, bean or legume family.

Plant: Sprawling stems, rising 1'-2', with compound leaves and rounded clusters of pink pea-like flowers. Perennial
Flowers: Pink, or pink and white, pea-like, about 1/3", in round clusters about 1" across, rising from leaf axils.
Leaves: Alternate, pinnately compound, 2"-4", usually with 11-17 elliptical leaflets each about 1/2" on short stems.
Fruit: Cluster of thin, elongated pods, 1"-2" long.
Blooming: June-September
Habitat: Fields, roadsides, waste areas.

Comments: Introduced from Europe, and sometimes used for erosion control, crown vetch often grows in dense patches, where it can crowd out other plants. Like other members of the pea family, the roots are colonized by nitrogen fixing bacteria, and the plants can add fertility to the soil.

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