Lathyrus incurvus (Roth) Roth - Incurved Pea.

Taxonomic position.

Family Fabaceae Lindl. genus Lathyrus L.

Main synonyms:

Vicia incurva Roth; Orobus incurvus (Roth) A.Br.

Morphology and biology.

Perennial plant 40-80 cm tall. Stems erect or somewhat ascending, quadrangular, ribbed along two edges, narrow-winged along the others, wings often ciliate. Stipules semisagittate, 0.5-2.5 cm long. Petioles short. Leaf rachis bent arcuately, ends in branched tendril. Leaf consists of 4-5 pairs of oblong-lanceolate obtuse leaflets 1.5-5 cm long, 6-15(20) mm wide, with very prominent reticulate veins and cusped apex. Leaves beneath grey-green, weakly pubescent. Peduncles weekly angular, subequal to leaves. Inflorescence a rather lax raceme of 8-12 flowers. Bracts small, subulate. Pedicels thickened, longer than calyx. Flowers as long as calyx. Calyx tubular-campanulate, glabrous, with distinct veins. Calyx teeth shorter than tube, acuminate, triangular-lanceolate, lower one the longest, upper one the shortest. Corolla dirty-lilac. Standard 13-15 mm long, gradually narrowing into a broad unguis. Wings bent, slightly shorter than standard, on narrow short unguis. Keel as long as wings, on its lower margin bent at almost right angle, on narrow long unguis. Style bent from the base at right angle, glabrous, slightly broadening above. Pods oblong-linear, slightly bent, 3-3.5 cm long and about 5-5.5 mm wide. Pod valves with diagonal reticular venation. Seeds globous, smooth. Hilum makes about 1/3 of seed circuit. Flowers in June, fruits in July - August. Entomophilous. Zoochore. 2n=14.


General distribution: Asia Minor. Former USSR: European part - Transvolga, Black Sea area, Crimea, Lower Don, Lower Volga; Caucasus - all regions except Talysh; Central Asia - Aral-Caspian area.


In meadows, among shrubberies, at lakesides, quite often on saline soils.

Use and economic value.

Forage - well eaten by cattle, prospective for use as a forage on saline areas.


Grossheim AA. 1952. Flora of Caucasus. 2nd ed. V.5. P.408, map. (In Russian).
Mayevsky PF. 2006. Flora of the middle zone of European part of Russia. 10th ed. Moscow. P.336-338. (In Russian).
Fedorov AA., Tzvelev NN., eds. 1987. Flora of the European part of the USSR. V.6. Leningrad: Nauka. P.163. (In Russian).
Shishkin BK., Bobrov EG., ed. 1948. Flora URSS. V.13. P.504-505. (In Russian).
Cherepanov SK. 1995. Vascular plants of Russia and adjacent states (the former USSR). St.Petersburg. 990 p. (In Russian).

© T.N.Smekalova


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