Vicia sylvatica L. - Wood vetch.

Taxonomic position.

Family Leguminosae Endl., genus Vicia L

Biology and morphology.

Perennial herb with scrambling and climbing growth habit. Plant is rhizomatous. Stems almost glabrous up to 100-150 cm tall, branched in the upper part. Leaves compound pinnate with 8-10 pairs of opposite leaflets. Leaf axis is ended by the strong branched tendril. Leaflets 1,0-2,0 cm length, 6-8 mm width, elliptical in form, glabrous at the both sides, thin and soft, pale green in colour. Flower stalks are longer than correspondent leaf stalks. Racemes are laxiflorous with 8-10 flowers. Flowers 15-18 mm long, white with lilac veins. Pods 20-25 mm long, 4-5 width, elongated, lanceolate, dark brown in colour. Seeds are dark violet. Self-incompatible plant, cross-pollinated mainly by bees. Blossoms June-July, seeds ripening July-August. 2n = 14.


The European part of former USSR (without Crimea), Western Siberia, Kazakhstan.


Occurs in fir forests, birch woods, or along wood edges.

Utilization and economic value.

Perspective forage crop for meadows improvement for forest zone with enough humidity. Characterized by high seed productivity in unfavorable years. High nutritive value. Can by utilized for hay or silage, particularly arable silage, from perennial grasses/vetch mixtures.


Field Guide of Plants of Central Asia. 1981. Kamelin R. V., Kovalevskaya S. S., Nabiev M. M. (ed.). - Tashkent: FAN, Vol. VI1, - 396 p.
Flora of cultivated plants. Vicia. 1999. Repjev S. I. (ed.). - SPb.: VIR, Vol. IV, part 2 - 492 pp. (in Russin).
Flora of the European part of the USSR. 1987. Phyodorov A. A. (ed.). Vol. VI. - 254 pp. (in Russian).
Flora of Kazakhstan. 1961. Pavlov N. B. (ed.). - Alma - Ata: AN KazSSR, Vol. V. - 515 pp. (in Russian).
Flora of Siberia. 1994. Polozhiy A.B., Malyshev L.I., (ed.). - Novosibirsk: Nauka, Vol. 9. - 280 pp. (in Russian).
Flora of the USSR. Genus Vicia. 1948. Schischkin V.K., E.G. Bobrov (ed.). Vol. XIII, M.-L.: AN USSR , p. 406 - 475. (in Russian).
Flora of Central Siberia. 1979. Malyshev L.I., Peshkova G. A. (ed.). Novosibirsk: Nauka, Vol. II, 506 pp. (in Russian).
Hulten, Eric and Magnus Fries. 1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer.

© Dzyubenko N. I., Dzyubenko E. A.


Web design —
Kelnik studios