Common Name: LEGUME FAMILY
Habit: Annual to tree. Leaf: generally alternate, generally compound, generally stipuled, generally entire, pinnately veined Inflorescence: generally raceme, spike, umbel or head; or flowers 1--few in axils. Flower: generally bisexual, generally bilateral; hypanthium 0 or flat to tubular; sepals generally 5, generally fused; petals generally 5, free, fused, or lower 2 +- united into keel (see 3, Key to Groups, for banner, wings); stamens 10 or many (or , 5, 6, 7, 9), free or fused or 10 with 9 filaments at least partly fused, 1 (uppermost) free; pistil 1, ovary superior, generally 1-chambered, ovules 1--many, style, stigma 1. Fruit: legume, including a stalk-like base (above receptacle) or not. Seed: 1--many, often +- reniform, generally hard, smooth.
Genera In Family: +- 730 genera, 19400 species: worldwide; with grasses, requisite in agriculture, most natural ecosystems. Many cultivated, most importantly Arachis, peanut; Glycine, soybean; Phaseolus, beans; Medicago, alfalfa; Trifolium, clovers; many orns. Note: Unless stated otherwise, fruit length including stalk-like base, number of 2° leaflets is per 1° leaflet. Upper suture of fruit adaxial, lower abaxial. Anthyllis vulneraria L. evidently a waif, a contaminant of legume seed from Europe. Laburnum anagyroides Medik., collected on Mount St. Helena in 1987, may be naturalized. Ceratonia siliqua L., carob tree (Group 2), differs from Gleditsia triacanthos L. in having evergreen (vs deciduous) leaves that are 1-pinnate (vs 1-pinnate on spurs on old stems, 2-pinnate on new stems) with 2--5(8) (vs 7--17) 1° leaflets, commonly cultivated, now naturalized in southern California. Aeschynomene rudis Benth. , Halimodendron halodendron (Pall.) Voss (possibly extirpated), Lens culinaris Medik. are agricultural weeds. Caragana arborescens Lam. only cult. Ononis alopecuroides L. , Sphaerophysa salsula (Pall.) DC. all evidently extirpated. Cercidium moved to Parkinsonia; Chamaecytisus to Cytisus; Psoralidium lanceolatum to Ladeania.
eFlora Treatment Author: Martin F. Wojciechowski, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Martin F. Wojciechowski, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Common Name: VETCH
Habit: Annual, perennial herb, unarmed. Stem: generally sprawling or climbing, ridged or angled. Leaf: even-1-pinnate; stipules with an upper and smaller lower lobe, entire to dentate; leaflets 4--many, alternate to opposite (often on 1 pl), linear to ovate; main axis generally ending as tendril. Inflorescence: raceme or cluster, axillary; peduncle or pedicels present; bracts small or 0. Flower: corolla generally lavender to purple, occasionally white or yellow; 9 filaments fused, 1 free; style generally not +- flat, puberulent at tip, all around or especially abaxially. Fruit: dehiscent, generally +- oblong, generally flat; base stalked or not. Seed: >= 2.
Species In Genus: +- 160 species: North America, Eurasia, South America, Africa. Etymology: (Latin: vetch)
eFlora Treatment Author: Robert E. Preston & Duane Isely
Habit: Annual, glabrous or hairy. Stem: decumbent to ascending, 1--6 dm. Leaf: stipules generally toothed; leaflets 8--14, 1.5--3.5 cm, tip acute, truncate, or notched, often with 1 slender tooth. Inflorescence: << subtending leaf; flowers in sessile or +- peduncled clusters of 1--3, pedicels short. Flower: calyx attachment basal, lobes linear, +- equal; banner glabrous. Fruit: 2.5--6 cm, 2.5--8 mm wide, hairy initially, glabrous at maturity; stalk-like base 0. Chromosomes: 2n=12,14.
Note: Subspecies occasionally treated as species.