Plants: Pasture And Forage Legumes
Alfalfa Medicago sativa
Probably native to Persia, alfalfa was introduced to North America by Spanish colonists. As a perennial, leguminous plant of high yield, high protein content and vigorous growth, alfalfa is the most important hay and silage plant in North America, Argentina, Southern Europe, Asia and other...
Beach Bean Canavalia maritima syn. rosea
Beach Bean is a leguminous, drought and salt tolerant vine adapted to growing under very dry and hot conditions. History says that it was an important food crop for Captain James Cook and his crew on their voyage around the world from 1768-1771. Vines are widely distributed on beaches and dunes...
Caribbean Stylo Stylosanthes hamata (L.) Taub.
Caribbean Stylo is indigenous to semi-arid sites in islands of the West Indies basin. It is presumed native also in southern Florida and coastal regions of South America and Central America close to the Caribbean. It is reported from Venezuela, Colombia and portions of Brazil. The species is...
Centurion Centrosema pascuorum Martius ex Benth.
Centrosema pascuorum occurs natively in arid regions of northern South America including portions of Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana and Venezuela and in similar arid to semi-arid regions in Central America. It has been introduced into portions of Australia, Southeast Asia, Indonesia and the...
Common Stylo Stylosanthes guianensis (syn. Trifolium guianensis)
This erect, many-branched perennial herb grows up to 1 m (3 ft 3in) high with trifoliate leaves. It is native to South America, replacing lucerne, and is now one of the most popular pasture legumes grown in the tropics. Low palatability during the rain, but readily eaten during the dry...
Cowpea Vigna unguiculata subsp. unguiculata
A wild pea that is very similar to this cultivated variety is native to central Africa and is now grown around the world where temperatures are moderate.
Crimson Clover Trifolium incarnatum
Crimson Clover is a temperate legume, native to southeastern Europe and southwestern Turkey. It spread to Asia and then to the U.S. by 1819. It has a distinctive, brilliant, crimson cone-shaped head of florets.
Desmanthus Desmanthus virgatus
Native to the American tropics and subtropics.
Desmodium Desmodium heterocarpon
The origin of this species of Desmodium is not clear but from its growing preferences it must have been from a moist, humid area with rainfall no less than 120 cm/year. It is now a familiar forage legume in Indo-China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Central and South America at low elevations.
Evenia Aeschynomene evenia
Aeschynomene evenia is a short-lived perennial. Evenia fares well in areas that have an abundance of rain as it tolerates waterlogging and maintains its nutritive content when other grasses are declining. Seeded in very early spring in tropical pasture land, it will be well established in 2-3...