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Variable in colour, 5
Pink, purple, white or bicoloured pea-like flowers with flower stalks longer than the leaves. Flowers are borne in round clusters.
Pea-like pods, up to 8cm long. The 4-sided, reddish-brown pods are slender, pointed and exist in crown-like clusters.
Compound leaves with 11 to 25 leaflets. Unlike the true vetches, Crown Vetch lacks a tendril.
1 metre tall
Crown Vetch is one of the most poisonous of all British plants. The entire plant contains a toxin called coronillin. This is a yellow glucoside which affects the heart and can result in a wide range of serious symptoms from nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
Never consume a wild plant unless you are 100% certain that it is safe to eat and you know that you have identified it correctly.
Flowers are sweet-smelling.
Axseed, Axwort, Hive Vine, Purple Crown Vetch, Rose Vetch, Rosy-flowered Crown Vetch, Trailing Crown Vetch.
Farmland, gardens, grassland, meadows, roadsides, wasteland.