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botanical name:
Vicia sativa var. leucosperma
Vicia sativa var. leucosperma © Deeproot Plant Base
common name:  Winter Tares, Vetch
synonyms:  Vicia leucosperma
family:  Fabaceae
characteristics: annual/biennial
height: 1.20m
width: 1.20m
growth rate: fast
growth habit: climber
leaf colour: green
flower colour: purple
stem/bark: green
main season:
aspect: full sun, part shade
conditions: moist soil, clay soil, sandy soil
preferred soil pH: neutral-alkaline
minimum temp: -29°C
USDA zone: 5 to 9
description:
Fast growing annual with a scrambling or low climbing habit. Quickly forms a dense foliage layer. Pinnate leaves with 5 or 6 pairs of leaflets. Small pea-like pink or purple flowers.

cultivation:
Any moist, well drained soil with a reasonable amount of sun. Does not do well on very acid soils. Late sowing can be left over winter.
Normally sown as a green manure and despite its climing tendancy, left to form a weed supressing foliage mat over the surface. The growth is then dug in a few weeks before the plot is to be used.

propagation:
From seed, sown between March and September.

usage:
Cultivated as a green manure, very effective fixer of nitrogen.

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