Lotus corniculatus

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Taxonomy
Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae (Leguminosae)
Genus: Lotus
Species: corniculatus
Scientific Name
Lotus corniculatus
L.
Common Names

birdsfoot trefoil, birdfoot deervetch

Overview

Appearance
Lotus corniculatus is an invasive low-growing, perennial forb with stems that can reach 2 ft. (0.6 m) long.
Foliage
Leaves are compound (with 5 oval to linear leaflets), stipulate and alternate. Leaflets (upper 3) are 0.5 in. (1.3 cm) long and less than 0.13 in. (0.3 cm) wide; the lower two resemble leaf-like stipules. Flowering occurs from May to August, when yellow, sweet pea-like flowers develop.
Flowers
Flowers develop in clusters of 2-8 on a long peduncle (stalk).
Fruit
Fruits are pods that occur in head-like clusters. Each pod is brown to black, cylindrical, 0.6-1.4 in. (1.5-3.5 cm) long, contains up to 49 seeds and has a persistent style at the apex.
Ecological Threat
Lotus corniculatus is native to Eurasia and North Africa and occurs in pastures, roadsides, wetlands, disturbed grasslands and riparian areas.

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