Family: Pea [Fabaceae (Leguminosae)]


Acacia

Anthyllis

Arachis

Astragalus

Cercis

Cicer

Colutea

Coronilla

Cullen

Cytisus

Dorycnium

Galega

Genista

Gleditsia

Glycine

Glycyrrhiza

Hippocrepis

Hymenocarpus

Laburnum

Lathyrus

Lens

Lotus

Lupinus

Medicago

Melilotus

Onobrychis

Ononis

Ornithopus

Oxytropis

Paraserianthes

Phaseolus

Pisum

Robinia

Scorpiurus

Securigera

Senna

Sesbania

Spartium

Tetragonolobus

Thermopsis

Trifolium

Trigonella

Ulex

Vicia

Vigna

Wisteria

The PEA FLOWER STRUCTURE


All flowers in the Pea Family have five petals, and five fused sepals behind them, forming a bi-symmetric flower. There is the large banner or standard at the top, with two smaller wings below and within these two keels. This flower doesn't always look as though it has five petals. There are two inner petals called the keel, which are paired into a flattened-cup shape which generally hide both stigmas and stamens.

Two further paired petals called the wings are on either side of the keel forming a cowl around the keel (sometimes hiding the keel). Finally a much larger petal usually nicked in the middle, called the banner, is held aloft. Sometimes the flowers look as though they only have two petals, but closer inspection involving the fingers always reveals five.

This flower is that of Lucerne.


IDENTIFYING FEATURES OF THE PEA FAMILY

  • How many leaflets are in each pinnate leaf (if present)
  • Whether the leaflets of a pinnate leaf are in opposite pairs, or are alternate.
  • The length and breadth of leaflets
  • Whether the leaflets have minute prickles at the tip, or not.
  • Whether there are two auricles where the leaves attach to the stem.
  • The presence or absence of a chevron shaped marking on the leaves.
  • The presence (or absence) of any tendrils (by which it clambers)
  • Whether the tendrils (if present) are split into two.
  • And if the tendrils are split into two, whether they are equal in length.
  • Whether the wings and keel of the flower are equal in length, or which is the longer.
  • The colour(s) of the flowers.
  • Whether the stems have wings, or not.
  • Whether the seed pods are spiralled, curved or nearly straight.
  • The presence or absence of hairs, and where.

an AMINO ACID and a NON-PROTEINOGENIC AMINO ACID

Canavanine, a non-protein amino acid (NPAA), is present in the seeds of many plants belonging to the Pea family. It is very similar to a genuine amino acid, Arginine, that is part of many proteins. Note that the main difference is the substitution of an oxygen atom into the carbon chain and necessary rearrangement of the nitrogen double-bond. In the human body Canavanine is able to masquerade as Arginine for the body has no mechanism to differentiate it from Arginine, so it too becomes (wrongly) incorporated into proteins. This can disrupt the ability of the synthesized protein to do its intended job. Thus Canavanine is poisonous in the human body and is one of the reasons why the seeds of plants from the pea family are often very poisonous.

[Arginine is shown for comparison only, as far as the Author knows it does not occur in the Pea Family].



[MEDICAGO] Medicks

Lucerne. (Medicago sativa ssp. sativa) Photo: © RWD

Sand Lucerne (Medicago sativa ssp. varia) Photo: © RWD

Black Medick (Medicago lupulina) Photo: © RWD



[GALEGA] Goat's-rue

Goat's-Rue. (Galega officinalis) Photo: © RWD



[MELILOTUS] Melilots

Melilot (White). (Melilotus alba) Photo: © RWD

Melilot (Golden). (Melilotus altissimus) Photo: © RWD



[ANTHYLLIS] Kidney Vetch

Vetch (Kidney). (Anthyllis vulneraria) Photo: © RWD



[VICIA] Vetches

Vetch (Tufted). (Vicia cracca) Photo: © RWD

Wood Vetch (Vicia sylvatica) Photo: © RWD

Broad Bean (Vicia faba) Photo: © RWD

Bush Vetch (Vicia sepium) Photo: © RWD

Narrow-Leaved Vetch (Vicia sativa ssp. nigra) Photo: © RWD

Hairy Tare (Vicia hirsuta) Photo: © RWD



[LUPINUS] Lupins

 

[Lupinus]
LUPIN HYBRID CHART
[Lupinus]
LUPIN
HYBRIDS
BSBI MAPS
Tree
Lupin

(arboreus)
Nootka
Lupin

(nootkatensis)
Garden
Lupin

(polyphyllus)
Garden
Lupin

(polyphyllus)
Russel
Lupin
Lupinus
×
pseudopolyphyllus
Nootka
Lupin

(nootkatensis)
  Lupinus
×
pseudopolyphyllus
Tree
Lupin

(arboreus)
  Russel
Lupin

There also exists a hybrid between Russel Lupin (Lupinus × regalis) [which is itself a hybrid between Garden Lupin and Tree Lupin] and Garden Lupin again, called Lupinus × regalis × L. polyphyllus; a sort of triple-hybrid and one which cannot be shown on the above chart, so is shown here instead:
Lupinus x regalis x L. polyphyllus

Lupinus SPECIES LACKING HYBRIDS
(Lupinus albus) White Lupin
(Lupinus angustifolius) Narrow-leaved Lupin
(Lupinus luteus) Yellow Lupin

Tree Lupin (Lupinus arboreus) Photo: © RWD

Russell Lupin (Lupinus x regalis) Photo: © RWD



[ONOBRYCHIS] Sainfoin

Sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia) Photo: (CC by 2.0) Keith Marston



[TRIFOLIUM] Clovers

Hop Trefoil (Trifolium campestre) Photo: © RWD

Lesser Trefoil (Trifolium dubium) Photo: © RWD

Strawberry Clover (Trifolium fragiferum) Photo: © RWD

Alsike Clover (Trifolium hybridum) Photo: © RWD

Crimson Clover (Trifolium incarnatum ssp. incarnatum) Photo: © Sarah Lancaster

Hare's-Foot Clover (Trifolium arvense) Photo: © RWD



[CYTISUS] Brooms

Broom (Cytisus scoparius) Photo: © RWD



[SPARTIUM] Spanish Broom

Spanish Broom is totally alone in the Spartium Genus, even worldwide.

Spanish Broom (Spartium junceum) Photo: © RWD



[GENISTA] Greenweeds

Dyer's Greenweed (Genista tinctoria) Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone



[ONONIS] Restharrows

Common Restharrow (Ononis repens) Photo: © RWD



[LATHYRUS] Peas

Broad-Leaved Everlasting-Pea (Lathyrus latifolius) Photo: © RWD

Grass Vetchling (Lathyrus nissolia) Photo: © RWD

Bitter Vetchling / Bitter Vetch (Lathyrus linifolius) Photo: © RWD

Two-Flowered Everlasting-Pea (Lathyrus grandiflorus) Photo: © RWD

Narrow-Leaved Everlasting-Pea (Lathyrus sylvestris) Photo: © Phillip Bagshaw

Meadow Vetchling (Lathyrus pratensis) Photo: © RWD



[TETRAGONOLOBUS] Dragon's-Teeth

Dragon's-Teeth (Tetragonolobus maritimus) Photo: © Sue Parsons



[HIPPOCREPIS] Hoseshoe Vetches

Horseshoe Vetch (Hippocrepis comosa) Photo: © RWD



[LOTUS] Bird's-Foot Trefoils

Bird's-Foot Trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) Photo: © RWD

Greater Bird's-foot-Trefoil (Lotus pedunculatus) Photo: © RWD



[ORNITHOPUS] Bird's-Foots

Bird's-Foot (Ornithopus perpusillus) Photo: © RWD



[WISTERIA] Wisterias

Chinese Wisteria (Wisteria sinensis) Photo: © RWD



[COLUTEA] Bladder-Sennas

Bladder Senna (Colutea arborescens) Photo: © RWD



[LABURNUM] Laburnums

Laburnum (Laburnum anagyroides) Photo: © RWD



[ASTRAGALUS] Milk-Vetches

Wild Liquorice (Astragalus glycyphyllos) Photo: © Claire Slater

Purple Milk-Vetch (Astragalus danicus) Photo: © RWD



[ROBINIA] False-Acacia

False Acacia (Robinia pseudoacacia) Photo: © RWD



[SECURIGERA] Crown Vetch

Crown Vetch (Securigera varia) Photo: © John Phandaal Law

Family: Pea [Fabaceae (Leguminosae)]

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