Plant Image
Flower spike
Middle Verde River - Sue Smith

Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Astragalus calycosus - Torrey's milkvetch

Other Common Names: Torrey's milk-vetch, matted poison milkvetch, mattedmilkvetch
Plant Form: Forb or Subshrub

Family: Fabaceae

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Middle Verde River
Sue Smith
Middle Verde River
Sue Smith
Middle Verde River
Sue Smith
Plant - spring
Middle Verde River
Sue Smith
Forb Plant Description

Origin: Native   Life Cycle: Perennial   Similar Species: Astragalus spp.
General Desc: A low, stemless perennial with silvery green compound leaves and purplish-pink pea-shaped flowers.
Identification notes: Banner wings (upper petals) deeply notched at the apex. Plant hairs are dolabriform (pick-shaped and attached near their middle). Seed pods are 2-celled and distinguish this species from other Astragalus spp.
Height: 6 to 8 inches


Habitat Description: Rocky slopes, mesas, pinyon-juniper forests.
Plant Communities: Desert Scrub, Interior Chaparral, Semidesert Grasslands, Pinyon Juniper Woodland
Elevation: 3000 - 8000 feet

Flower Characteristics

Color: Pink to purplish     Shape: Irregular in elongated clusters     Tubular: Y     Flowering Period: Apr - Jul
Description: Pea-like flowers, petals pink to purplish, often purple-tipped or pink-tipped, fading to blue. Banner petals are white in the center.

Leaf and Stem Characteristics

Leaf Color: Grayish-green     Leaf Type: Compound     Leaf Shape: Round or oval     Leaf Margin: Smooth     Leaf Attachment: Opposite     Leaves Clasp: N
Hairs: Leaves and stems     Spines: N
Leaf Description: Leaflets 3 to 7, about 1/4 inch long, obovate and narrow to or egg-shaped, broadest toward their tip.

Fruit and Seed Characteristics

Fruit Type: Pod
Fruit Notes: Pods are 2-celled, narrowly oblong, usually curved, 1/2 to 3/4 inches long, to 1/4 inch wide, ascending, without stems and laterally compressed.

  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
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Last Updated: Nov 21, 2021
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