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Vicia cracca - L.
                 
Common Name Tufted Vetch, Bird vetch, Cow vetch
Family Fabaceae or Leguminosae
USDA hardiness 4-8
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Grassy and bushy places, avoiding acid soils[13, 17].
Range Northern Europe, including Britain, to Japan in northern Asia.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

Summary

Vicia cracca Tufted Vetch, Bird vetch, Cow vetch


commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Hugo.arg
Vicia cracca Tufted Vetch, Bird vetch, Cow vetch
commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Vicia_cracca_Sturm2.jpg
   
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of flower
Vicia cracca is a PERENNIAL CLIMBER growing to 1.8 m (6ft).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 5. It is in flower from May to August, and the seeds ripen from Jul to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies.The plant is self-fertile.
It can fix Nitrogen.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms

Habitats
 Meadow; Hedgerow;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves;  Seed.
Edible Uses: Tea.

Seed - cooked[2, 22, 105]. They are boiled or roasted[183]. Leaves and young stems - cooked[105]. Used as a potherb[183]. The leaves are a tea substitute[183].
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.

Galactogogue.

The cooked plant is used as a galactogogue[218].
Other Uses
Green manure.

Can be used as a green manure[46].
Cultivation details
Succeeds in any well-drained soil in a sunny position if the soil is reliably moist throughout the growing season, otherwise it is best grown in semi-shade[200]. This species has occasionally been cultivated as a food plant, but yields are too low to make it very worthwhile[2]. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[200].
Propagation
Pre-soak the seed for 24 hours in warm water and then sow in situ in spring or autumn.

Books by Plants For A Future

Other Names
Found In
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.

Conservation Status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :
Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Artemisia ludovicianaWhite Sage, Louisiana Sage, Prairie Sage, Western Mugwort22
Artemisia ludoviciana gnaphalodesWhite Sage02
Avena ludovicianaOats20
Lactuca ludovicianaWestern Wild Lettuce, Biannual lettuce22
Orobanche ludovicianaBroom Rape, Louisiana broomrape, Manyflower broomrape11
Vicia americanaAmerican Vetch, Mat vetch21
Vicia amoena 10
Vicia amurensis 10
Vicia articulataOne-Flower Vetch10
Vicia benghalensisPurple Vetch00
Vicia erviliaBitter Vetch10
Vicia faba equinaHorsebean30
Vicia faba majorBroad Bean41
Vicia faba minutaTick Bean30
Vicia giganteaGiant Vetch21
Vicia grandiflora kitaibelianalarge yellow vetch20
Vicia heptajuga 10
Vicia hirsutaHairy Tare, Tiny vetch20
Vicia hirticalycina 10
Vicia japonica 10
Vicia monanthaHard Vetch, Barn vetch20
Vicia narbonensisFrench Vetch, Purple broad vetch20
Vicia nipponica 10
Vicia noeana 10
Vicia pisiformisPea Vetch, Pale-flower vetch10
Vicia pseudo-orobus 10
Vicia sativaWinter Tares, Garden vetch, Subterranean vetch30
Vicia sativa leucospermaWinter Tares30
Vicia sepiumBush Vetch10
12
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Expert comment
 
Author
L.
Botanical References
17200
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
 
Marijan Š.
Jun 4 2013 12:00AM
From my personal experience, raw unripe seeds have a pleasant, almond-like aroma.
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Subject : Vicia cracca  

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