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Lotus corniculatus L.
Family Fabaceae
Subfamily Faboideae
Common name: Birds-foot Trefoil

Lotus corniculatus L. APNI*

Synonyms: Lotus corniculatus var. hirsutus W.D.J.Koch APNI*

Description: Decumbent to ascending, annual or perennial to 40 cm high; stems solid, glabrous and glaucous to sparsely hairy.

Leaves with 5 leaflets, obovate to oblanceolate or ± circular, 3–15 mm long, 3–8 mm wide, lower 2 often smaller than upper ones, apex rounded or mucronate, usually glabrous.

Umbels 2–8-flowered; peduncle 5–10 cm long. Calyx 5–8 mm long, sparsely hairy, teeth erect in bud. Corolla 10–16 mm long, yellow with red veins on the standard; keel strongly upturned with a long beak.

Pod terete, 1.5–3 cm long, 2–3 mm diam., ± straight, brown; seeds many, dark brown.


Photo © ANBG

Flowering: spring–summer.

Distribution and occurrence: Widespread, mostly grows in grassland.
NSW subdivisions: *NC, *CC, *NT, *CT, *ST, *NWS, *CWS, *SWS, *SWP
Other Australian states: *Qld *Vic. *Tas.
AVH map***

Text by E. H. Norris & G. J. Harden
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 2 (1991)


APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.
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