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BUTTERFLY PEA

(Clitoria ternatea, fam. Fabaceae)

Clitoria ternatea Clitoria ternatea Clitoria ternatea Clitoria ternatea Clitoria ternatea
Twining perennial climber with minutely hairy stems to 5m long with woody rootstock.
Form or habit: Climbing or twining plant
Latex:Absent
Leaf:Compound Alternate

Pinnate, 5-7 elliptic to rounded leaflets, 20-50 x 10-30mm, more-or-less glabrous above, sparsely hairy below. Persistent triangular stipules, 4-5mm long.

Flower conspicuous: Conspicuous
Flower colour: Blue or white, pale yellow at base
Flower description:Pea-shaped blue or white, pale yellow at base, up to 50mm long x 25mm wide, solitary or paired and borne on long axillary stems.
Fruit conspicuous: Conspicuous
Fruit colour: Brown
Fruit: Dry
Fruit description: Flattened light brown pods, 50-120 x 7-12mm, with a pointed tip, contain 5-10 seeds 3-7mm long.
Habitat:
Distribution:
Food source for:
Toxicity:No toxicity known
Origin:India, Tropical Asia
Weed:Yes
Weed status:Environmental/garden escapee
Notes:Spread by: Seeds in garden waste, possibly also spread by seeds in animal manure.
Invades: Roadsides, canefields, natural areas, especially near human habitation.
Notes: Garden escapee; now widely naturalised in Queensland. Palatable and nutritious to
stock; pods eaten by humans in Philippines.
Information sources: Mackay Regional Pest Management Group (2011) Weeds of the Mackay Whitsunday Region.

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