Electronic Flora of South Australia
Electronic Flora of South Australia
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Electronic Flora of South Australia genus Fact Sheet

Family: Leguminosae

Citation: L., Sp. Pl. 734 (1753).

Derivation: Latin name of some vetch, probable V. sativa.

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: Vetches.

Weak annual, biennial or perennial herbs, sometimes climbing by means of tendrils, glabrous to villous; leaves mostly paripinnate, the rhachis terminating in a branched or simple tendril, very rarely imparipinnate; leaflets mostly in numerous pairs, mostly entire, mucronate, herbaceous (in S. Aust.); stipules semisagittate or toothed; stipels absent.

Inflorescence axillary, racemose, or flowers sometimes solitary or few in leaf-axils; bracts generally small and deciduous; bracteoles absent; calyx tubular or campanulate, actinomorphic to bilabiate, teeth subequal or the upper 2 shorter and partly joined; petals blue, purple or yellow; standard obovate or oblong, emarginate, tapering into a long claw; wings obliquely obovate or oblong, usually but not always adherent to the keel; keel obtuse; 9 stamens united, upper stamen free or more or less united with the tube; anthers uniform; ovary subsessile or stipitate, 2-many-ovuled; style terete or compressed, seldom flattened at the apex, pubescent or pilose all round or on the lower side only or with an apical tuft of hairs (rarely glabrous); stigma terminal.

Pods oblong to linear, compressed; seeds globose or rarely compressed, with the funicle dilated into a thin aril.

Distribution:  About 150 species in the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere and South America. (P. W. Ball. ( 1968) Flora Europaea 2:129-136; Chrtková-Zertová ( 1979) Flora Iranica 140:16-56.)

Biology: No text

Key to Species:
1. Flowers 1 or 2, subsessile in the axils; stipules mainly glandular
V. sativa 4.
1. Flowers in racemes or solitary on long peduncles; stipules eglandular
2. Racemes 8-40-flowered
V. cracca 1.
2. Racemes 2-8-flowered
3. Flowers 10-20 mm long; pods 20-50 x 6-12 mm
V. monantha 3.
3. Flowers 3-9 mm long; pods 9-12 X 3-4 mm
4. Leaflets 4-1 O-paired; flowers 3-8 per raceme; calyx teeth equal; pod 2- or 3-seeded
V. hirsuta 2.
4. Leaflets 3-6-paired; flowers 2 or 3 per raceme; calyx teeth unequal; pod mostly 4-seeded
V. tetrasperma 5.

Author: Not yet available

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