E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Astragalus australis var. cottonii (L.) Lam.
Fabaceae (Pea family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #7337)

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Distribution of Astragalus australis var. cottonii
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Species Information

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Perennial herb from a woody taproot and much-branched stem-base; stems few to several, tufted, decumbent to ascending, 10-40 cm long/tall, with short or long, unbranched hairs, or nearly glabrous.
Alternate, pinnately compound, 2-10 cm long, short-stalked to unstalked; leaflets 7-15, linear-oblong to lanceolate or elliptic, 7-25 mm long, hairy on both surfaces or glabrous above; stipules egg-shaped to oblong, 3-8 mm long, the lower ones joined and clasping the stem, the upper ones free.
Inflorescence a short, axillary raceme of 6 to 30 spreading, pea-like flowers, the racemes compact at first, later elongating, 2-12 cm long on stalks that exceed the leaves; corollas yellowish-white, often tipped or tinged with purple, the banner longer than the wings, which are notched at the tip and slightly longer than the keel; calyces 4-7 mm long, usually black-hairy, the awl-shaped teeth from 1/2 to nearly as long as the bell-shaped tube.
Pods, narrowly ellipsoid, somewhat sickle-shaped, 2-3 cm long, spreading to drooping on slender stalks 4-8 mm long, short-hairy becoming glabrous in age, membranous, slightly flattened, 1-chambered.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Mesic to dry, open bluffs, grassy or rocky slopes, streambanks, meadows, ridges, tundra and forest openings from the steppe to alpine zones; infrequent in extreme N and E BC, rare on the Queen Charlotte Islands; circumpolar, N to AK, YT and NT, E to PQ and S to CO, UT, NV and OR; Eurasia.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

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General References