Prepared by Jennifer L. D’Appollonio, Assistant Scientist, University of Maine, Orono, ME 04469. Updated April 2019.
Scientific name: Vicia cracca L.
Common name(s): cow vetch, bird vetch, tufted vetch, boreal vetch
Images: (to see enlargements [PC]: click on image, then right click and choose “view image”)
-Flowers July-August on one side of inflorescence.
-Small hairs cover a slender trailing stem 2′-4′ long.
-Eight to 24 narrow, leaflets are 3/4″-1″ long and 1/8″ wide with a pair of tendrils at each leaf’s end.
-Violet flowers are 1/2″ long, seed pods 3/4″-1″ long and 1/4″ wide producing five to eight seeds.
-may be confused with V. villosa; see left sidebar of Go Botany webpage
Go Botany. “Vicia Cracca L.” Vicia Cracca (Bird Vetch, Cow Vetch): Go Botany, 2020, gobotany.nativeplanttrust.org/species/vicia/cracca/.