Graham's Tick-trefoil

Desmodium grahamii

Trifoliate leaf of Desmodium grahamii photo © by Mike Plagens flower of Desmodium grahamii
bean pod of Desmodium grahamii photo © by Mike Plagens

Observed in the ponderosa woodlands of Granite Mountain Wilderness, Yavapai Co., Arizona, USA. September 2012.

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FRUIT: The small bean pods are coated with sticky hairs and readily break into individual bean-segments which then can hitch a ride on clothing of fur.

FLOWERS: Dark pink or purplish pea flowers are small and borne in short spikes.

LEAVES: The leaves have three leaflets, i.e. trifoliate.

PERENNIAL: Re-grows for several seasons from a woody crown. Herbaceous upper portions are slender-stemmed and often supported by other plants.

RANGE: Found in montane meadows and forest throughout much of southwestern United States. There are a number of similar species of Desmodium.

Fabaceae -- Bean Family

More Information:

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Arizona Naturalist
Arizona's Ponderosa Woodlands
The Flora of Arizona's Ponderosa Woodlands


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 23 May 2015