Vascular Plants of the Gila Wilderness

Presented in Association with the
Western New Mexico University Department of Natural Sciences

Medicago minima (Linnaeus) Linnaeus
(Little Bur Clover)


Family: Fabaceae

Status: Exotic

Synonyms:
Medicago minima (L.) L. var. compacta Neyraut
Medicago minima (L.) L. var. longiseta DC.
Medicago minima (L.) L. var. pubescens Webb

Medicago minima is an exotic weed in our area. It has three lobed leaves with obovate leaflets and the stems and leaflets are hairy. The flowers are small and bright yellow. The fruits are the most distinctive character, being spirally wound and armed with what appear to be small fishhooks. Medicago minima is found in city sidewalks and waste areas where their sprawling form traps elms seeds and other wind carried material. Many thanks to Christopher Davis who recognized this plant as M. minima.
Please click on an image for a larger file.



Medicago minima, photo Russ Kleinman & Bill Norris, Silver City, June 10, 2010



Medicago minima, closeup of leaf with three obovate pubescent leaflets, photo Russ Kleinman & Bill Norris, Silver City, June 10, 2010



Medicago minima, closeup of flower & fruit, photo Russ Kleinman & Bill Norris, Silver City, June 10, 2010



Medicago minima, plant measured in lab with standard 15cm rule, photo Russ Kleinman & Bill Norris, Silver City, June 10, 2010



Medicago minima, macro of spirally wound and armed fruit, photo Russ Kleinman & Bill Norris, Silver City, June 10, 2010


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