Medicago ruthenica Ldb. - Russian Medick.

Taxonomic position.

Family Fabaceae Lindl., genus Medicago L.


Medicago korshinskyi (Grossh.) Kamelin & Gubanov, Melilotoides korshinskyi (Grossh.) Czerep., Melilotoides ruthenica (L.) Sojak, Melilotoides ruthenicus (L.) Sojak, Melissitus korshinskyi (Grossh.) Latsch., Melissitus ruthenicus (L.) Latsch., Pocockia ruthenica (L.) Boiss., Pocockia ruthenica (L.) P.Y. Fu & Y.A. Chen., Trigonella korshinskyi Grossh., Trigonella ruthenica L., Trigonella schischikinii Vassilcz., Turukhania ruthenica (L.) N.S. Pavlova.

Morphology and biology.

Perennial plant with thick rhizome, adpressedly pubescent, less often subglabrous; stems straight, (15)20-50(60) cm tall, usually numerous, branched in upper part; stipules rather large, lanceolate-subulate, with a tooth at the base; leaflets narrow, oblong-oblanceolate to linear-oblong, (8)12.15(22) x (2)3.4 mm, dentate in upper part, adpressedly pilose; inflorescence stalks 2-3 times as long as floral leaf, 2-3(5) cm long. Inflorescence rather dense, capitate-umbellate, with 4.10(12) flowers on slender pedicels 2 mm long, bracteoles small, subulate; calyx 2-3 times shorter than corolla, with triangular teeth shorter than tube; corolla 5.6 mm long, yellow or pale violet; standard oblong; pod flat, oblong-elliptic, straight or slightly bent, 8.12 mm long, 3,0.4,5 mm wide, reticulately veined with large mesh, (1)2.5-seeded, with a small hamately turned-up beak; seeds ovoid, about 2 mm long, brownish, smooth. Flowers in early June, fruits in late July - early September. Cross-pollinated plant. 2n=?


Transbaikal area and Primorie Territory.


Occurs in steppes, on stony and debris slopes and upland meadows.

Economic value.

Valuable forage plant, forming extensive green mass; deserves bringing under cultivation.


Polozhij AV., Malyshev LI., ed. 1994. Flora of Siberia. V.9. Fabaceae (Leguminosae). (In Russian).
Lesins KA., Lesins I. 1979. Genus Medicago (Leguminosae). A taxogenetic study. 228 p.
Roskov YR. et al. 2005. ILDIS World Database of Legumes. [Online] Available at: .
Small E. 2003. Distribution of perennial Medicago with particular reference to agronomic potential for semiarid Mediterranean climate In: Bennett SJ., ed. New perennial legumes for sustainable agriculture. P.57-80.

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