Vicia americana Muhl. ex Willd.
American Vetch, American Deervetch
Fabaceae (Pea Family)
USDA Symbol: VIAM
A slender, climbing plant clinging to other vegetation or structures by slender, coiling tendrils at end of each leaf; loose racemes of 3-10 deep pinkish-purple to reddish-lavender pea flowers on stalks from leaf axils.
With showy flowers unusually large for the genus, this plant resembles many species of Lathyrus but is distinguished by the distribution of the hairs at the tip of the style. In Vicia the hairs usually surround the tip, resembling a shaving brush; in Lathyrus they are generally on the upperside, like a little hairbrush.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Fruit Type: Legume
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Purple
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul
DistributionUSA: AK , AZ , CA , CO , DC , IA , ID , IL , IN , KS , MD , MI , MN , MO , MT , ND , NE , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OK , OR , PA , SD , TX , UT , VA , WA , WI , WV , WY
Native Distribution: Throughout West; also in eastern Canada and northeastern United States.
Native Habitat: Open places in woods, road banks, and fencerows.
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Sun
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low
BenefitConspicuous Flowers: yes
Value to Beneficial InsectsSpecial Value to Native Bees
This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.
Find Seed or Plants
Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.
National Wetland Indicator Status
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR
BibliographyBibref 946 - Gardening with Prairie Plants: How to Create Beautiful Native Landscapes (2002) Wasowski, Sally
Bibref 841 - Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants (2006) Burrell, C. C.
Search More Titles in Bibliography
From the ArchiveWildflower Newsletter 1994 VOL. 11, NO.6 - Wildflower Center Featured Non-Profit in Neiman Marcus Christmas Book, Dana Leav...
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Vicia americana in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Vicia americana in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Vicia americana
MetadataRecord Modified: 2021-10-19
Research By: TWC Staff