Astragalus contortuplicatus Linn., Sp.Pl. 758. 1753. Boissier, Fl.Or. 2:230.1872; Baker in Hook.f.,Fl.Brit.Ind.2:122.1876; Cooke,Fl.Bomb. Pres. 1:330.1902; Gontscharov in Komarov, Fl. U.R.S.S. 12:281.1946; Ali in Biologia 7: 26.1961.
Annual, suberect or procumbent, c. 5-45 cm tall, stem branched from the base, pubescent, hairs soft, white, spreading. Leaves imparipinnately compound, c. 5-15 cm long, petiole and rachis pubescent; leaflets 13-21, c. 5-12 mm long, oblanceolate, elliptic or oblong, entire, retuse, densely pilose on both sides; stipules c. 5-6 mm long, partially adnate to the base of the petiole, pubescent, hairs white. Inflorescence an axillary, peduncled raceme, peduncle c. 1-7.5 cm long, pubescent. Bracts c. 2.5-3 mm long, white-ciliate. Flowers subsessile. Calyx c. 5-6 mm long, densely pubescent, hairs white and black, teeth c. 2.5-4 mm long. Corolla yellow. Vexillum c. 5.5-6.5 mm long. Wing c. 4.5-5 mm long. Keel c. 5.5 mm long. Fruit subsessile, c. 1-2.2 cm long, falcate or spirally twisted, crumpled-rugose, pubescent, hairs white, semibilocular; seeds 20-30.
Type: Siberia, H. Ups. ult. 926.21 (LINN).
Distribution: Central Europe, Russia; European Russia, Caucasus, Eastern Siberia, Central Asia, Pakistan (Punjab, Sind, Baluchistan).
Though the exact localities and habitats are not known in all cases, but whenever this information is available, it has substantiated in almost all cases that it is a plant of saline meadows, river valleys or grows in the vicinity of lakes. There is strong evidence to support the hypothesis that the migratory birds disseminate the seeds. This also explains the rather abnormal distributional pattern of this taxon.