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Astragalus glycyphyllo - L.

Common Name Milk Vetch, Licorice milkvetch
Family Fabaceae or Leguminosae
USDA hardiness 3-7
Known Hazards Many members of this genus contain toxic glycosides[65]. All species with edible seedpods can be distinguished by their fleshy round or oval seedpod that looks somewhat like a greengage[85]. A number of species can also accumulate toxic levels of selenium when grown in soils that are relatively rich in that element[65].
Habitats Rough grassy and bushy places[13, 17].
Range Much of Europe, including Britain, though rare in the south, east to the Caucasus and W. Asia.
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care
Fully Hardy Well drained soil Full sun
Astragalus glycyphyllo Milk Vetch, Licorice milkvetch


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Astragalus glycyphyllo Milk Vetch, Licorice milkvetch
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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Astragalus glycyphyllo is a PERENNIAL growing to 0.2 m (0ft 8in) by 0.5 m (1ft 8in).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 3. It is in flower from July to August, and the seeds ripen from August to October. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Bees, Lepidoptera (Moths & Butterflies).
It can fix Nitrogen.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Habitats

Edible Uses

The herb is occasionally used as a tea[183]. The root is said to be a liquorice substitute[5], but certainly not from the point of view of taste[K].

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.


None known

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Other Uses

Agroforestry Services: nitrogen, understory legume. Fodder: pasture.

Special Uses

Cultivation details

Requires a well-drained soil in a sunny position[1, 134]. Prefers chalk and limestone soils[5], succeeding in grassland[200]. The leaves emit a sweet, aromatic scent when handled[245]. Plants are intolerant of root disturbance and are best planted in their final positions whilst still small[200]. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Many members of this genus can be difficult to grow, this may be due partly to a lack of their specific bacterial associations in the soil[200]. Carbon farming - Cultivation: Management: hay, fodder. For polyculture design as well as the above-ground architecture (form - tree, shrub etc. and size shown above) information on the habit and root pattern is also useful and given here if available. The plant growth habit is a clumper with limited spread [1-2].

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Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame[200]. A period of cold stratification may help stored seed to germinate[200]. Stored seed, and perhaps also fresh seed, should be pre-soaked for 24 hours in hot water before sowing - but make sure that you do not cook the seed[134, 200]. Any seed that does not swell should be carefully pricked with a needle, taking care not to damage the embryo, and re-soaked for a further 24 hours[134, 200]. Germination can be slow and erratic but is usually within 4 - 9 weeks or more at 13°c if the seed is treated or sown fresh[134]. As soon as it is large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

No

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Astragalus aboriginorumIndian MilkvetchPerennial0.3 -  LMND20 
Astragalus adscendensPersian MannaShrub0.0 -  LMND20 
Astragalus boeticusSwedish CoffeeAnnual0.6 7-10  LMND20 
Astragalus brachycalyx Shrub0.0 -  LMND20 
Astragalus canadensisCanadian Milkvetch, Shorttooth Canadian milkvetch, Morton's Canadian milkvetchPerennial1.0 7-10  LMND32 
Astragalus carduchorum Shrub0.0 -  LMND20 
Astragalus chartostegius Shrub0.0 -  LMND10 
Astragalus chinensisHua Huang Qi, Chinese milkvetchPerennial0.7 0-0  LMND02 
Astragalus christianus Perennial0.2 -  LMNDM20 
Astragalus complanatusBei Bian Huang QiPerennial0.8 -  LMNDM02 
Astragalus crassicarpusGround Plum, Groundplum milkvetchPerennial0.5 6-9  LMND41 
Astragalus creticus Shrub0.0 -  LMND20 
Astragalus densissimus Shrub0.5 -  LMND20 
Astragalus diphysusSpecklepod Milkvetch, Freckled milkvetchPerennial0.0 0-0  LMND30 
Astragalus echinus Perennial0.5 -  LMND10 
Astragalus edulisMilkvetchAnnual0.3 0-0  LMND20 
Astragalus exscapus Perennial0.3 4-8  LMND01 
Astragalus floridusDuo Hua Huang QiPerennial0.3 -  LMND02 
Astragalus florulentus Shrub0.0 -  LMND20 
Astragalus garbancillo Shrub0.0 -  LMND00 
Astragalus globiflorus Shrub0.2 -  LMND20 
Astragalus glycyphyllosMilk Vetch, Licorice milkvetchPerennial0.2 3-7  LMND103
Astragalus gummiferTragacanth, Gum tragacanth milkvetchShrub0.3 7-10  LMND23 
Astragalus hamosusEuropean milkvetchAnnual0.6 0-0  LMND12 
Astragalus henryiQin Ling Huang QiPerennial0.8 -  LMNDM10 
Astragalus hoantchyWu La Te Huang QiPerennial0.4 -  LMNDM11 
Astragalus kurdicus Shrub0.2 -  LMND20 
Astragalus leioclados Shrub0.0 -  LMND20 
Astragalus massiliensis Shrub0.3 5-9  LMND303
Astragalus membranaceusHuang QiPerennial0.3 5-9  LMND05 
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