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Golden Tare Vicia sativa

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
VIK-ee-uh sa-TEE-vuh
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Vetch is a weedy, annual winter wildflower in the bean family.  It is commonly used as a cover crop because it can fix nitrogen in the soil.  This semi-erect climbing plant, uses adjacent vegetation for support.  

Its natural habitats include cropland, fallow fields, weedy meadows, roadsides, along railroads and other waste areas.  It is occasionally planted as a food source for farm animals including cattle, horses, and sheep.  Wild animals that feed on the foliage include deer, rabbits, several varieties of caterpillars and butterflies, as well as some game birds.  When planted as a forage plant for animals, it is beneficial to have adjacent companion plants for support of this climbing vine-like plant. Without support, it can be subject to rot as it spreads along the ground.

It is also grown as a cover crop in vineyards and orchards to assist in the suppression of spring weeds.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Its aggressive self seeding can cause this weedy plant to spread quickly.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#purple flowers#weedy#climbing#winter annual weed#herbaceous#climbing vines#cool season weed#short lifespan#herbaceous annual#cover crop#forage
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#purple flowers#weedy#climbing#winter annual weed#herbaceous#climbing vines#cool season weed#short lifespan#herbaceous annual#cover crop#forage
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Vicia
    Species:
    sativa
    Family:
    Fabaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Annual
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Europe, Asia, North Africa
    Fire Risk Rating:
    medium flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Cross-pollinated bumblebees and other bees with long tongues. Ants are attracted to the nectar.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Wildlife Food Source
    Climbing Method:
    Tendrils
    Edibility:
    The leaves can be made into teas, cooked or eaten with the young leaves.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Annual
    Weed
    Habit/Form:
    Climbing
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Coarse
    Appendage:
    Tendrils
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b, 10a, 10b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Black
    Brown/Copper
    Fruit Type:
    Legume
    Fruit Length:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Each somewhat flattened legume contains 4 to 8 seeds. The rounded seeds are dispersed after the pod explosively opens.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Purple/Lavender
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Inconspicuous pea-shaped flowers occur in the area between the stems and leaf petioles (leaf axils). They occur in pairs and on flower stalks (peduncles) that range from 2-6 mm in length. The upper petal is broad, flares up and is notched in the center. The two lateral petals are oval shaped and can be a darker color. The flowers are replaced by elongated 1 1/2-3" green, flattened seedpods which later become dark brown containing 4-8 seeds.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Smooth
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Needles
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Linear
    Oblong
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    The 3-5" leaves are very narrow. Each is evenly-pinnate and has 5 to 6 pairs of leaflets, leaflets 3/4" long and 1/4" wide. Tendrils form on the ends of the leaves. Long stems arise from fibrous roots, and are purple. The leaves are medium light green on top and pale green on the bottom. They are ribbed and slightly pubescent. along the bottom central vein.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Surface:
    Smooth (glabrous)
    Stem Description:
    A single stem
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Slope/Bank
    Landscape Theme:
    Edible Garden
    Winter Garden
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Small Mammals
    Problems:
    Weedy
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    unknown
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    unknown
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Seeds