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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains

28. Fabaceae, the Bean Family

2. Desmodium Desv. -- Tickclover

1. Desmodium canadense (L.) DC. -- Canada tickclover

Erect perennial 6-15 dm tall; stem stout, simple or branched, strongly ribbed and hirsute above. Leaves pinnately 3-foliate, the leaflets dark green above, pale beneath, ovate-lanceolate to lanceolate or occasionally obovate, 3-9 cm long, 1-3.5 cm wide, puberulent above, more densely so beneath, acute to obtuse, sometimes apiculate; petioles 2-20 mm long; stipules linear-subulate, 4-9 mm long, ciliate. Inflorescence of 1 terminal raceme or a panicle of several racemes, the terminal one longest, 6-20 cm long, pubescent on the axis; bracts brownish, lanceolate, appressed-hairy, deciduous; pedicels 4-8 mm long. Flowers reddish-purple, drying dark blue, irregular; calyx purple, deeply 5-toothed, somewhat irregular, 4-6 mm long, the lowest sepal longest; corolla 5-9 mm long; stamens diadelphous in a 9 + 1 arrangement. Fruits constricted between the 2-several seeds, 1.5-5 cm long, beset with hooked hairs, ultimately breaking apart into 1-seeded segments which are 3-5 mm wide. Jul--Sep. Stream banks, pond margins, ditches, floodplains and swampy places; occasional in e and sc ND, e, c and sw SD and most of NE; (Que. and N.S. to Alta., s to SC, AR and OK).
GIF- Distribution Map

Map key

Previous Species -- Amorpha fruticosa L. -- False indigo
Return to Family -- Fabaceae - The Bean Family
Next Species -- Glycyrrhiza lepidota Pursh -- Wild licorice

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