By indexer
26 days ago

Horseshoe vetch

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Horseshoe vetch (Hippocrepis comosa) is commonly found on downland turf, favouring chalky or limestone soils. It is widespread in all parts of Great Britain except the far north.

The woody rootstock produces many trailing stems that turn up to produce the flower-heads (from May to August). It grows from 4 to 16 inches high (10-40 cms). Each leaf has two rows of leaflets with a terminal singleton.

The yellow flowers have evolved a subtle means of ensuring the production of fertile seed. The most common pollinators are heavy insects such as bumble and honey bees. The petals are so shaped that when a bee lands on the lower petal the stamens force a string of pollen through a hole at the end of the petal and onto the bee. At the same time the stigma touches the underside of the bee where there may be pollen gathered from visiting another flower.

The ripe pods break up into three to six horseshoe-shaped segments, thus giving the plant both its familiar and botanical name – hippocrepis is Greek for horseshoe.
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soncee Nice street photo
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indexer @soncee It's not what I'd call a street! Also, it's the words that would appreciate the comments, as opposed to the stock photo I used as an illustration!
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soncee Ok friend! Nice illustration
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Justin Very interesting👍
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fortune Very interesting name, we call this plant just as vetch, of course, translated to Lithuanian it sounds different. but I never knew it has a name of two words.
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