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Lathyrus latifolius

Phonetic Spelling
LATH-ih-rus lat-ee-FOH-lee-us
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Perennial Sweet Pea or Everlasting Pea is an old fashioned herbaceous perennial climbing vine with beautiful bright flowers that grows up 10' tall. This plant blooms in summer, and blooms are on long peduncles above the foliage. It climbs by tendrils and can be trellised or used to cover a fence or other structure. It makes a nicely mounded ground cover and will cover a bank. The stems have leafy wings which contribute to its ornamental appeal. Key identifiers include the winged stems and the ternately compound leaves with the 3rd leaf being a 3-branched tendril. This plant requires full sun and well-drained soil. Seeds are propagated by pre-soaking the seed in water for several days, then planting less than half an inch deep in the early spring.This plant dislikes being transplanted and has no serious pest problems.

Quick ID Hints:

  • 3-part leaf with 3rd part being a 3-branched tendril
  • Herbaceous vine with winged, green stems
  • Pea-like flower clusters on long stems above foliage
  • Fruit is bean-like pod with green 'peas' inside

More information on Lathyrus.

Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Albus'
  • 'Blushing Bride'
  • 'Pink Beauty'
  • 'Pink Pearl'
  • 'Snow Queen'
  • 'Splendens'
Tags:
#purple#white#butterflies#pink#deciduous#yellow#poisonous#summer#blue#spring#white flowers#purple flowers#pink flowers#yellow flowers#legume#blue flowers#playground#fence#mounding#trellises#vines#climbing vines#banks#children's garden#climber#edible fruits#ground cover#edible garden#fantz
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Albus'
  • 'Blushing Bride'
  • 'Pink Beauty'
  • 'Pink Pearl'
  • 'Snow Queen'
  • 'Splendens'
Tags:
#purple#white#butterflies#pink#deciduous#yellow#poisonous#summer#blue#spring#white flowers#purple flowers#pink flowers#yellow flowers#legume#blue flowers#playground#fence#mounding#trellises#vines#climbing vines#banks#children's garden#climber#edible fruits#ground cover#edible garden#fantz
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Lathyrus
    Species:
    latifolius
    Family:
    Fabaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Eastern Central & Southern Europe and NW. Africa
    Climbing Method:
    Tendrils
    Twining
    Edibility:
    EDIBLE PARTS: Peas and very young pods HARVEST TIME: Only collect peas and young pods from areas you know have NOT been treated with pesticides. Collect young pods in early summer and peas slightly later. SAFE HANDLING PROCEDURES: Soak peas and young pods in warm water to remove dirt and debris. Do not use dish detergent or any type of sanitizer. These products can leave a residue. Boil in salted water with a dash of sugar. Cook until bright green and tender. Or, stir fry young pods with other vegetables . SOURCE: Crowhurst, A. The Weed Cookbook. Lancer Books, New York. 190 pp.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Poisonous
    Vine
    Wildflower
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Climbing
    Mounding
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Texture:
    Medium
    Appendage:
    Tendrils
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Green
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Legume
    Fruit Description:
    Fruits are a flattened, narrow legume with fleshy, round, green seeds. Young fruits and seeds (peas) are edible once cooked.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Blue
    Gold/Yellow
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Petals:
    7 - 20 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Flowers have 5-15 petals. They are pea-like in elongated clusters and corolla is up to 1" in size. They can be magenta-purple, rose-pink, white, yellow, or blue in color. Inflorescence is a raceme, axillary. Peduncle length exceeds the length of leaves. They bloom in midsummer to fall.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Blue
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Oblong
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are ternately compound with the 3rd leaflet being a 3-branched tendril. They are alternate, pinnately divided, and each has 2 or more leaflets and a terminal tendril. Leaflets are oblong to elliptic, acute, mucronate, cuneate, entire, 3-5 veined, blue-green, and up to 4" long. Stipules are persistent and leaflike.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Surface:
    Smooth (glabrous)
    Stem Description:
    Stems are green, alate, and are either pubescent or glabrous. They have leafy wings.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Naturalized Area
    Recreational Play Area
    Slope/Bank
    Vertical Spaces
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Children's Garden
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
    Weedy
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    TOXIC ONLY IF LARGE QUANTITIES EATEN. "Lathyrism": paralysis, slow and weak pulse, shallow breathing, and convulsions.
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Amine, phenol, and glycoside
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Seeds