The Sonoran Desert Florilegium

plants of the florilegium

Acmispon humistratus
foothill deervetch

FAMILY:  Fabaceae — Legume family

SYNONYMS:  Lotus humistratus, Hosackia brachycarpa

ETYMOLOGY:  The name of the genus Acmispon is taken from the Greek acme, which means "point" and may refer to the pointed tip of the seedpod.

The species name humistratus is formed from two Latin words, humi-, meaning "earth" or "ground", and stratus, or "spreading". This epithet describes the low spreading nature of the plant.

GEOGRAPHIC RANGE:  OR, CA, NV, ID, UT, AZ NM, TX, south into Baja California and northern Mexico

HABITAT:  Occurs in grasslands, oak and pine woodland, deserts, roadsides and other disturbed areas below 5,000’


DESCRIPTION:  An herbaceous annual spreading plant growing less than 4” high. In favorable conditions, the plant can form dense prostrate mats.

Small pea-like flowers are deep yellow tinted with red or orange on the banner petal. Flowers grow without a stalk directly from the leaf axils.

Stems, fleshy leaves, and seedpods are covered with soft hairs.