General: Perennial herb from a creeping rhizome; stems erect to trailing, 15-100 cm tall/long, angled but not winged, soft-hairy.
Leaves: Alternate, pinnately compound with 4 to 10 mostly paired leaflets; leaflets narrowly egg-shaped to lance-elliptic, 2-12 cm long, 0.2-3 cm wide; tendrils usually well developed and branched, at least some grasping; stipules 2-lobed, lanceolate to linear, less than 1/2 as long as the leaflets.
Flowers: Inflorescence a loose, stalked, axillary cluster of 2 to 7 pea-like flowers; corollas usually bluish-purple or reddish-purple, fading to tan, 13-27 mm long, the banner darker than the wings or keel, about as long as the wings and 1-3 mm longer than the keel, the banner-claw shorter than the blade; calyces 6-12 mm long, somewhat hairy, the lanceolate teeth about 1/2 as long as the tube.
Fruits: Pods, 3-7 cm long, 4-9 mm wide, glabrous; seeds 4 to 12.
Mesic to dry, open forests (deciduous, coniferous, and mixed), glades and meadows in the lowland and montane zones; common in C (between 52o and 56o N) and SW BC, locally frequent in SC and SE BC, absent on the Queen Charlotte Islands, N Vancouver Island and the adjacent coast; S to CA.
A shade-tolerant/intolerant, submontane to montane, Western North American forb distributed in the Pacific and Cordilleran regions. Occurs on moderately dry to fresh, nitrogenrich soils within boreal, temperate, and cool mesothermal climates; its occurrence decreases with increasing elevation, precipitation, and latitude. Occasional in coniferous forests, frequent in broad-leaved forests on water-shedding sites. Symbiotic relationship with nitrogen-fixing bacteria enhances the supply of available soil nitrogen. Characteristic of Moder and Mull humus forms.
Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2019. E-Flora BC:
Electronic Atlas of the Plants of British Columbia [eflora.bc.ca]. Lab for
Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British
Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed:
2020-03-31 4:25:25 AM
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