Description: Annual herbs.
Leaves imparipinnate; stipulate; stipels absent.
Inflorescences axillary, pedunculate clusters or umbels; pedicels minute; bracts leafy when present, bracteoles usually present. Calyx campanulate, teeth ± equal or upper 2 partly fused, teeth shorter than tube. Standard oblong to circular; wings ± oblong; keel ± straight, apex obtuse, shorter than wings. Stamens diadelphous, some filaments dilated towards apex; anthers uniform. Style inflexed; stigma capitate.
Pods terete, or linear and flat, straight or curved, reticulate, usually separating into 1-seeded articles; seeds without aril.
Distribution and occurrence: World: 10 species, southern Europe, Canary Is., Mediterranean, western Asia, tropical Africa, South America. Australia: 3 species (naturalized), Qld, N.S.W., Vic., W.A.
Text by C. Gardner
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Bracts subtending flower heads absent or minute; plants glabrous to sparsely pubescent||Ornithopus pinnatus|
|Bracts subtending flower heads leafy, 5–22 mm long, pinnate; plants pubescent||2|
|2||Flowers yellow; pod strongly curved, not or scarcely constricted between the articles; stems usually not branched||Ornithopus compressus|
|Flowers pink or white; pod straight or slightly curved, distinctly constricted between the articles; stems usually branched|
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