Utah Sweetvetch

Utah Sweetvetch


Northern Sweetvetch, Chain-Pod
(Hedysarum boreale)

A nitrogen-fixing, taprooted, and drought-tolerant perennial wildflower with bright pink flowers from late spring into summer and sporadically until fall with additional water. Their unique seedpods are called loments, which form in a chain-like shape and when ripe will break apart where they narrow.

Utah sweetvetch provides lots of nectar to many pollinators and we noticed a lot of bumblebees and butterflies using it at our location. These are tough plants that can tolerate heat, drought, and cold and are adaptable to varied soil textures, preferring neutral to alkaline pH soils. Provides a native, drought tolerant, non-toxic forage for domestic and wild animals

Edible roots with a sweet licorice-like flavor, best early in season. May have slight toxicity, so use sparingly.

Germination requires some cold stratification; direct sow seed or seed flats and leave them outside from fall through early spring. Germination and establishment are aided by inoculating seeds with Rhizobium bacteria, which is frequently used for nitrogen-fixing plants in the Bean family (Fabaceae). Inoculation may not be necessary if your soil already hosts the appropriate microbes in high enough numbers; existing clovers, vetches, alfalfa or other bean family plants are a good indication that rhizobia are present.

Seed germination may also benefit from light scarification, particularly to speed up sprouting if started in the spring. To scarify seeds, nick them with a blade or rub seeds between sheets of sandpaper to thin or slightly open the seed coat.

Packet: 100 Seeds

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