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Crown vetch

Leguminosae Coronilla varia L.

Source: Magness et al. 1971

This is not a true vetch but in general appearance resembles the vetches. It is a long-lived perennial legume, native to the Mediterranean area but now widely distributed in local areas throughout the Central and Northern States. Stems are weak and hollow, up to 4 feet, procumbent unless supported. The plant spreads by creeping underground roots and is excellent for erosion control. Seed should be scarified and inoculated before planting. Palatability of crown vetch is said to be low except while growth is young and tender. The crop may well increase in importance for erosion control, pasture and hay in the northeastern quarter of the United States.