genus hedysarum


Hedysarum (Sweetvetch) is a genus of the botanical family Fabaceae, consisting of about 309 species of annual or perennial herbs in Asia, Europe, North Africa, and North America.

Hedysarum leaves are imparipinnate, with leaflets entire. Stipels are absent, with stipules free or connate. Inflorescences are peduncled racemes or heads. Bracts are small, with bracteoles below the calyx, and calyx teeth subequal. Corolla is pink, purplish, yellow, or whitish. Vexillum is longer than the wings, with an obtuse keel longer or rarely shorter than the wings. Stamens are diadelphous, 9+1, and anthers uniform. Ovary is 2-8-ovuled. Fruit is a lomentum, with segments glabrous, pubescent, bristly, or spiny.

Hedysarum species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Coleophora accordella. Some species, such as Hedysarum alpinum, were eaten by the Inuit to help ward off the effects of scurvy due to it being rich in vitamin C, containing about 21 mg/100g. Charles Darwin also called the telegraph plant a Hedysarum.

Selected species

  • Hedysarum abyssinicum
  • Hedysarum acayucense
  • Hedysarum aculeolatum
  • Hedysarum acuminatum
  • Hedysarum acutifolium
  • Hedysarum adhaerens
  • Hedysarum adscendens
  • Hedysarum aequidentatum
  • Hedysarum ahilum
  • Hedysarum aikini
  • Hedysarum aikinianum
  • Hedysarum alabukense
  • Hedysarum alaicum
  • Hedysarum alamani
  • Hedysarum alaschanicum
  • Hedysarum alatum
  • Hedysarum albiflorum
  • Hedysarum album
  • Hedysarum algeriense
  • Hedysarum algidum
  • Hedysarum alhagi
  • Hedysarum alopecuroides
  • Hedysarum alpinum
  • Hedysarum altaicum
  • Hedysarum amankutanicum
  • Hedysarum americanum
  • Hedysarum ammoxylon
  • Hedysarum ancistrocarpum
  • Hedysarum ancyrense
  • Hedysarum angrenicum
  • Hedysarum angustifolium
  • Hedysarum annuum
  • Hedysarum anomalum
  • Hedysarum antitauricum
  • Hedysarum aparines
  • Hedysarum aquaticum
  • Hedysarum arborescens
  • Hedysarum arboreum
  • Hedysarum arbuscula
  • Hedysarum arcticum
  • Hedysarum arenarium
  • Hedysarum argentatum
  • Hedysarum argenteum
  • Hedysarum argyreum
  • Hedysarum argyrophyllum
  • Hedysarum armenium
  • Hedysarum armenum
  • Hedysarum articulatum
  • Hedysarum ascendens
  • Hedysarum asperum
  • Hedysarum astragaloides
  • Hedysarum atlanticum
  • Hedysarum atomarium
  • Hedysarum atropatanum
  • Hedysarum aucheri
  • Hedysarum aureum
  • Hedysarum auriculatum
  • Hedysarum australe
  • Hedysarum austrokurilense
  • Hedysarum austrosibiricum
  • Hedysarum axillare
  • Hedysarum coronarium


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