A modern reference to temperate woody plants, including updated content from this site and much new material, can be found at Trees and Shrubs Online.

Ononis fruticosa L.

Modern name

Ononis fruticosa L.

A deciduous shrub of spreading habit, 2 or 3 ft high, with pale, crooked branchlets. Leaves trifoliolate, short-stalked, clasping the stem by the stipule at the base; the stipule is terminated by four slender teeth – two long and two short; leaflets narrowly obovate, 12 to 1 in. long, 18 to 14 in. wide, not downy, but wrinkled, unevenly toothed, all stalkless. Flowers 34 in. long, pale pinkish purple, borne (usually three on a stalk) on a short terminal panicle 2 to 3 in. long. Pods 34 to 1 in. long, stout, covered with bristly hairs, and containing two to five seeds. Bot. Mag., t. 317.

Native of S. Europe, especially in the Dauphiné Alps; also of N. Africa; known in our gardens since 1680. It flowers from June to August, and should only be propagated by seeds, which it ripens in plenty. Well distinguished from the other two by the shape of the leaflets, and by all three of them being stalkless.



Other species in the genus