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Department of Botany, University of Karachi, Karachi

Astragalus ammophilus var. persepolitanus

Credit: Asad

Trees, shrubs, climbers or herbs. Leaf rarely simple, mostly compound, unifoliolate, pinnately or palmately compound; stipels sometimes present. Inflorescence solitary, racemose, paniculate or umbellate, capitate or spicate. Flower zygomorphic. Calyx gamosepalous. Corolla polypetalous or sometimes united, vexillary imbricate, differentiated into the upper bigger outermost petal or vexillum, the two lateral wings, and the 2 innermost, sometimes united along the margin, forming the carina or keel. Stamens 10, rarely fewer, free or fused, mostly the adaxial stamen free or nearly so and the 9 united together, anthers uniform or dimorphic, basifixed or dorsifixed. Ovary unicarpellary, mostly unilocular, many-1 ovules on the adaxial suture. Fruit dehiscent by 2 or 1 sutures or indehiscent, or jointed and breaking up into 1-seeded parts. Seed sometimes arillate, with or without endosperm.

A large family with c. 480 genera and c. 12000 species; cosmopolitan in distribution.

List of tribes and genera

Tribe 1-Sophoreae Sophora, Castanospermum

Tribe 2-Podalyrieae-Thermopsis

Tribe 3-Genisteae-Spartium, Laburnum

Tribe 4-LotononideaeLotononis

Tribe 5-Lupineae-Lupinus, Argyrolobium

Tribe 6-Crotalarieae-Goniogyna, Crotalaria

Tribe 7-Robinieae-Robinia

Tribe 8-Millettieae-Millettia, Wisteria

Tribe 9-Lonchocarpeae-Pongamia, Derris

Tribe 10-Dalbergieae-Dalbergia

Tribe 11-Tephrosieae-Tephrosia

Tribe 12-Indigofereae-Indigofera, Cyamopsis

Tribe 13-Sesbanieae-Sesbania

Tribe 14-Galegeae-Galega

Tribe 15-ColuteaeColutea

Tribe 16-Astragaleae-Caragana, Chesneya, Gueldenstaedtia, Astragalus, Oxytropis, Glycyrrhiza

Tribe 17-Psoralieae-Amorpha, Psoralea

Tribe 18-Cajaneae-Cajanus, Atylosia, Flemingia, Rhynchosia, Paracalyx

Tribe 19-Diocleae-Pueraria, Canavalia

Tribe 20-Erythrineae-Erythrina, Butea, Mucuna

Tribe 21-Phaseoleeae-Phaseolus, Vigna, Macroptilium, Lablab, Macrotyloma

Tribe 22-Glycineae-Clitoria, Dumasia, Glycine, Shuteria, Teramnus

Tribe 23-Abreae-Abrus

Tribe 24-Vicieae-Cicer, Vicia, Lens, Lathyrus, Pisum

Tribe 25-Ononideae- Ononis

Tribe 26-Trifolieae-Melilotus, Trigonella, Medicago, Trifolium

Tribe 27-Loteae-Lotus, Securigera

Tribe 28-Coronilleae- Hippocrepis

Tribe 29-Hedysareae-Stracheya, Hedysarum, Onobrychis, Taverniera, Ebenus, Alhagi

Tribe 30-Aeschynomeneae-Smithia, Aeschynomene

Tribe 31-Desmodieae-Ougeinia, Desmodium, Uraria, Alysicarpus

Tribe 32-Stylosantheae-Zornia, Arachis

Tribe 33-Lespedezeae-Lespedeza, Campylotropis

Acknowledgements: I am grateful to the authorities of the following herbaria for herbarium and library facilities: Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; British Museum (Natural History), London; Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh; Naturhistorisches Museum, Vienna; National Herbarium, Rawalpindi; Pakistan Forest Research Institute, Peshawar and the herbarium of PCSIR, Peshawar. I am indebted to Dr. R. K. Brummitt, Dr. B.L. Burtt, Dr. R.D. Meikle, Dr. R. Polhill, Dr. W.T. Stearn, Mr. C. C. Townsend and Dr. V. Verdcourt for discussing various problems from time to time and for their advice and suggestions. My thanks are due to Mr. Abdul Ghafoor, Dr. M. Qaiser, Dr. Sultanul Abedin and Mr. Mohammad Niaz for checking the manuscript and for seeing it through the press. I am grateful to Miss P. Halliday for kindly accepting the extremely arduous task of checking the proof. The financial assistance, received from the United States Department of Agriculture under P.L. 480, is thankfully acknowledged.

Key to Tribes (Adapted from Hutchinson, Gen. Fl.Pl.1:304.1964)

1 Filaments all free from one another form base to apex   (2)
+ Filaments partly or almost wholly united, either monadelphous or diadelphous   (3)
2 (1) Leaves pinnately foliolate   Sophoreae
+ Leaves digitately foliolate   Podalyrieae
3 (1) Anthers uniform in size and shape or nearly so, not alternately basifixed and dorsifixed   (4)
+ Anthers dimorphic, alternately dorsifixed and basifixed, either all equal or alternately long and short   (53)
4 (3) Free upper part of filaments more or less filiform, not dilated upwards   (5)
+ Free upper part of all or half of the filaments dilated or expanded upwards (lower pair of leaflets sometimes resembling stipules)   (47)
5 (4) Fruits not breaking up into separate joints when mature, though sometimes filled between the seeds or divided by a longitudinal septum, sometimes 1-Seeded   (6)
+ Fruits jointed when ripe and transversely septate, usually breaking up into 1-seeded segments   (45)
6 (5) Filaments monadelphous and partly connate into a single more or less closed tube (neither unilaterally nor bilaterally split or only partially so), sometimes the adaxial filament free at the base but connate higher up with the remainder   (7)
+ Filaments diadelphous, mostly the adaxial (vexillary) filaments free or partly adnate to the remainder, or if monadelphous then all more or less connate into a sheath split adaxially and more rarely also abaxially   (15)
7 (6) Racemes or panicles not swollen at the nodes of the rachis (at the insertion of the pedicels), or the inflorescence fasciculate, capitate or subumbellate   (8)
+ Racemes with swollen (tumid) nodes at the insertion of the pedicels; bracts small or very caducous; style glabrous; calyxlobes 4 (upper 2 connate), vary rarely unequally 2-lipped   Diocleae
8 (7) Trees or shrubs, rarely climbers and herbs; indumentum when present not composed of biramous hairs; style glabrous or hairy; anthers neither tipped by gland nor mucronate   (9)
+ Herbs or shrublets with indumentum Composed mainly of biramous hairs; racemose or spikes axillary; anthers apiculate or gland tipped   Indigofereae
9 (8) Fruit dehiscent   (10)
+ Fruit indehiscent   (13)
10 (9) Flowers in axillary racemes or fasciculate at the older leafless nodes; leaves pinnate   Robinieae
+ Flowers in terminal racemes or panicles and sometimes also in the upper axils or flowers axillary   (11)
11 (10) Trees or shrubs, sometimes climbing   Millettieae
+ Shrublets or herbs, rarely annuals, not climbing (vexillum often hairy outside)   (12)
12 (11) Stipules more or less sagittate (perennial herbs)   Galegeae
+ Stipules not sagittate or absent (shrublets or herbs)   Tephrosieae
13 (9) Fruit not semi-orbicular or circinate; usually more than 2-seeded   (14)
+ Fruit semi-orbicular or circinate, 2-1-seeded; herbs or shrublets, rarely spiny   Hedysareae
14 (13) Calyx mostly cyathiform, truncate with small teeth; vexillum often silky outside; trees or tall scrambling shrubs   Lonchocarpeae
+ Calyx not cyathiform; shrublets or herbs; flowers mostly capitate or umbellate   Loteae
15 (6) Leaves simple (not unifoliolate), neither reduced to scales nor phyllodes; herbs with biramous hairs and apiculate stamens   Indigofereae
+ Leaves compound   (16)
16 (15) Leaves digitately foliolate, sometimes unifoliolate   (17)
+ Leaves pinnately trifoliolate or pinnate   (15)
17 (16) Leaves neither gland-dotted nor pellucid-punctate below   (18)
+ Leaves glandular or pellucid-punctate below   (24)
18 (17) Fruit not longitudinally septate i.e, with out an intrusion of the seed-bearing suture   (19)
+ Fruit longitudinally septate or partly so by the intrusion of the seed-bearing suture; stipels absent   Astragaleae
19 (18) Shrubs or herbs with indumentum (when present) composed of simple hairs; anthers not apiculate   (20)
+ Herbs or shrublets with indumentum (when present) composed of biramous hairs, anthers apiculate   Indigofereae
20 (19) Leaflets not toothed, mostly shrubs, rarely herbs   (21)
+ Leaflets more or less toothed, the nerves continued to the margin; mostly herbs with trifoliolate leaves; stipules often adnate to the petiole, stipels absent   Trifolieae
21 (20) Ovary with 1 ovule; fruit 1-seeded   Lespedezeae
+ Ovary with more than 1 ovule   (22)
22 (21) Stipels absent; mostly shrubs or shrublets; flowers in terminal (rarely leaf-opposed) spikes, racemes or heads, rarely axillary   Lotononideae
+ Stipels present; mostly herbs, often climbing   (23)
23 (22) Fruit jointed but dehiscing the full length   Desmodieae
+ Fruits not jointed, though sometimes filled between the seeds   Glycineae
24 (17) Fruits dehiscing by valves, 2 or more seeded   Cajaneae
+ Fruits indehiscent, usually 1-seeded   Psoraleeae
25 Leaves gland-dotted or pellucid-punctate below; ovules few (4-1)   (26)
+ Leaves neither gland dotted nor pellucid-punctate; ovules usually more than 4, rarely 2 or 1   (29)
26 (25) Fruits dehiscent; seeds mostly 2 or more, rarely 1   (27)
+ Fruits usually indehiscent and nearly always 1-seeded, bracteoles absent or minute and caducous; anthers versatile; shrubs and herbs   Psoraleeae
27 (26) Bracteoles mostly present; leaves impair-pinnate or 3-or 1-foliolate; vexillary filament free or free at the base   Millettieae
+ Bracteoles absent; leaves 3-foliolate, rarely 1-foliolate   Cajaneae
28 Fruit dehiscent by a valve or valves (sometimes only at the apex)   (29)
+ Fruit indehiscent, sometimes inflated and bladder- like   (68)
29 (28) Petals very unequal in length, either the vexillum or the keel petals much longer than the others or each other; stipels usually present, sometimes gland-like; seeds estrophiolate   Erythrineae
+ Petals more or less equal in length (or at any rate the keel-petals not much longer than the others; though sometimes beaked and spirally twisted   (30)
30 (29) Indumentum (when present) usually composed, at least in part, of biramous hairs; anthers apiculate; stipels mostly absent   Indigofereae
+ Indumentum not as above, anthers not apiculate   (31)
31 (30) Rachis of the inflorescence thickened (nodose) at the insertion of the pedicels; leaves mostly stipellate; vexillary filament usually quite free, radicle inflexed; style bearded along the inner face; keel-petals often spirally twisted   Phaseoleae
+ Rachis of the inflorescence not thickened at the insertion of the pedicels, or the flower fasciculate, capitate or axillary   (32)
32 (31) Rachis of the leaves transformed at the apex into a tendril or barren tip or bristle; stipels absent   (33)
+ Rachis of the leaves not ending in a tendril or barren tip   (34)
33 (32) Stamens 10; flowers solitary or inflorescence racemose in the leaf axils; claw of the vexillum free from the staminal sheath   Vicieae
+ Stamens 9, the vexillary absent; flowers in terminal or subterminal racemes; claw of the vexillum more or less adnate to the staminal sheath   Abreae
34 (32) Fruits longitudinally septate within by the intrusion of the seed-bearing suture, often inflated; anther-loculi mostly separate at the apex; style mostly glabrous   Astragaleae
+ Fruit not longitudinally septate as described above, sometimes transversely septate but not breaking up into separate joints   (35)
35 (34) Fruit inflated and bladder-like, sometimes dehiscent only at the apex; style bearded along the adaxial side or near the apex; plants not glandular   Coluteae
+ Fruits not inflated, mostly compressed, though sometimes turgid around the seeds   (36)
36 (35) Stipules when present not adnate to the petiole or only slightly so; leaflets entire   (37)
+ Stipules mostly adnate to the petiole; fruits not septate; leaflets often toothed; mostly herbs   Trifolieae
37 (36) Ovary with more than 1 ovule   (38)
+ Ovary with 1 ovule and fruit 1-seeded, enclosed by the persistent calyx; leaves pinnately 3-foliolate or 1-foliolate   Lespedezeae
38 (37) Style glabrous   (39)
+ Style bearded   (43)
39 (38) Racemes axillary or at the older leafless nodes   (40)
+ Racemes and panicles terminal or leaf opposed   (42)
40 (39) Hard-wooded trees and shrubs (seeds estrophiolate; flowers in axillary racemes or fasciculate at the older nodes)   Robinieae
+ Herbs and herbaceous climbers or creepers, sometimes subshrubby   (41)
41 (40) Upright herbs, rarely tall and subshrubby; fruit mostly filled between the seeds   Sesbanieae
+ Climbing herbs, rarely shrubs or trees; fruits usually not filled between the seeds   Glycineae
42 (39) Hard-wooded trees or climbing shrubs   Millettieae
+ Herbs, sometimes climbing or shrublets; stipels absent   Tephrosieae
43 (38) Hard-wooded trees and shrubs, rarely climbing shrubs   Robinieae
+ Herbs, sometimes tall or subshrubby, or rigid under-shrubs   (44)
44 (43) Racemes axillary or rarely flowers single or few in the leaf-axils, not leafy at the base   Sesbanieae
+ Racemes terminal or leaf-opposed or in the upper leaf-axils, often leafy at the base   Tephrosieae
45 (5) Leaves without stipels   (46)
+ Leaves with stipels (adaxial filaments free or more or less connate into a closed tube)   Desmodieae
46 (45) Keel-petals often obliquely truncate at the apex, wings short or very small, rarely equalling the keel Petals; filaments connate into a single sheath split adaxially, or vexillary filaments free   Hedysareae
+ Keel petals obtuse or beaked, incurved; wings often Transversely plicate; filaments sometimes connate into 2 lateral bundles   Aeschynomeneae
47 (4) Fruits 2-valved or indehiscent, sometimes transversely septate but not breaking up into separate joints   (48)
+ Fruits jointed and breaking up into separate segments, these indehiscent or rarely dehiscing by 2 valves (stipules absent, flowers not precocious)   Coronilleae
48 (47) Leaf-rachis not ending in a bristle or tendril   (49)
+ Leaf-rachis ending in a bristle or tendril; flowers solitary or racemose in the leaf-axils   Vicieae
49 (48) Claws of the petals not adnate to the staminal sheath or tube   (50)
+ Claws of some or all of the petals partly adnate to the staminal sheath; flowers in heads or dense spikes; leaflets usually toothed, the lateral nerves extended to the teeth or margin   Trifolieae
50 (49) Stamens united into an open sheath   (51)
+ Stamens united into a closed tube   (52)
51 (50) Stipules more or less free form the petiole; leaflets entire, veins not running into the margin; lowermost pair often resembling stipules   Loteae
+ Stipules mostly partly adnate to the petiole; veins of the leaves extended to the usually toothed margin   Trifolieae
52 (50) Subarborescent shrubs, silky pubescent, not glandular; leaves imparipinnate; stipules small, free; racemes terminal   Tephrosieae
+ Mostly perennial or annual herbs clothed with glandular hairs; leaves pinnately trifoliolate, rarely 1-foliolate or 2-3 pairs; stipules mostly herbaceous, adnate to the petiole   Ononideae
53 (3) Upper part of filaments swollen or expanded; perennial or annual herbs or shrublets, often spiny and glandular   Ononideae
+ Upper part of filaments neither swollen nor expanded   (54)
54 (53) Fruits not transversely septate or if so then not breaking up into separate joints   (55)
+ Fruits transversely septate and breaking up into 1-seeded joints (sometimes some fruits reduced to 1 joint) leaves few-foliolate   (67)
55 (54) Leaves not glandular-punctate; anthers markedly unequal; fruits usually more than 1-seeded   Psoralea
+ Leaves glandular-punctate; anthers nearly uniform; fruits usually indehiscent and mostly 1-seeded   Psoraleeae
56 Leaves pinnately 3-foliolate, usually with stipels; stems often twining or climbing, sometimes erect or prostrate   (57)
+ Leaves digitately 3-17-foliolate, 1-foliolate, simple or reduced to scales; stipels absent; stems not twining or climbing   (58)
57 (56) Vexillary filaments free form the others or nearly so; petals very unequal in length   Erythrineae
+ Vexillary filament connate with the others. Climbing herbs; leaves 3-foliolate; stipules small; calyx scarcely 2-lipped   Glycineae
58 (56) Filaments in a sheath open at base or split adaxially   (59)
+ Filaments in a closed tube   (61)
59 (58) Style glabrous; keel usually obtuse or rounded; vexillum without callus-like appendages at the base   (60)
+ Style ciliate; keel beaded; vexillum with paired Callus-like appendages at the base   Crotalaria
60 (59) Calyx with lobes subequal or with the lateral sinuses shallowest, rarely (in South Africa) with a 3-fid lower lip   Lotononideae
+ Calyx with 3 lower lobes in a 3-fid lip   Lupineae
61 (58) Leaves 1-3-foliolate, simple or reduced to scales (e.g. Spartium); keel sharply beaked (occasionally apiculate)   (62)
+ Leaves 5-11 (-17)-foliolate, rarely (in America) 1-3- foliolate, with stipules partly adnate to the petiole; keel sharply beaded, often enveloped by broad, apically coherent wings   Lupineae
62 (61) Calyx usually much shorter than keel-petals or with (1-) 2 short lips; stipules small from a persistent leaf-base or lacking; leaves various, often simple or reduced   Genisteae
+ Calyx nearly as long as the keel-petals, deeply 2-lipped; stipules usually form the branch, often expanded, sometimes adnate to the petiole; leaves 3-foliolate   Lupineae
63 Style glabrous   (64)
+ Style bearded lengthwise or ciliate on the adaxial side; fruit usually turgid or inflated   Crotalarieae
64 (63) Leaves pinnately foliolate; stipels mostly present; mostly climbers, the fruits sometimes with stinging hairs   (65)
+ Leaves digitately 3- or rarely 1-foliolate, sometimes sessile; mostly erect shrubs or shrublets; the fruit without stinging hairs   (66)
65 (64) Vexillary filaments free form the others or nearly so; petals very unequal in length   Erythrineae
+ Vexillary filaments connate with the others. Climbing herbs; leaves 3-foliolate; stipules small; calyx scarcely 2-lipped   Glycineae
66 (64) Calyx-lobes or teeth at most only slightly longer than the tube   Lotononideae
+ Calyx-lobes or lips much longer than the tube   Lupineae
67 (54) Filaments all connate into a closed tube; flowers spicate, capitate or rarely subracemose, terminal or axillary; fruits maturing above or below the ground   Stylosantheae
+ Filaments all connate into a sheath split adaxially or into 2 lateral bundles, rarely the vexillary filament free; flowers in axillary racemose rarely in axillary fascicles or subcorymbose; fruits maturing above the ground   Aeschynomeneae
68 (28) Fruit inflated and bladder-like or inflated on each face; stipels absent   (69)
+ Fruit neither inflated nor bladder-like, sometimes winged   (70)
69 (68) Fruit not longitudinally septate; style bearded along the adaxial (vexillary) side or near the apex; shrubs or herbs; leaves pinnate or 1-foliolate   Colutea
+ Fruit longitudinally septate or partly so by the intrusion of the seed-bearing suture; style glabrous   Astragaleae
70 (68) Leaflets (mostly) alternate, rarely only 1 leaflet. Anthers small, didymous, not versatile, loculi erect, opening by short, terminal slit or divergent at the base with a slit lengthwise   Dalbergieae
+ Leaflets opposite or a few at the same time alternate, or leaflets 3   (71)
71 (70) Leaf pinnately trifoliolate or unifoliolate (ovary with 1 ovule)   Lespedezeae
+ Leaf imparipinnate; vexillum often silky outside; ovary with 2 or more ovules   (72)
72 (71) Trees or tall scrambling shrubs; flowers in racemes or panicles   Lonchocarpeae
+ Shrublets or herbs, flowers capitate or umbellate   Loteae

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