Lespedeza virginica slender bush clover Fabaceae   LEVI; Bx, pb(DeCandido 2001); Q, i, j (Stalter and Lamont 2002; R (DeCandido 2001); 

Lespedeza virginica.Bruce Patterson.New England wild Flower Society.gobotany.newenglandwild.org

Lespedeza virginica.Bruce Patterson.New England wild Flower Society.gobotany.newenglandwild.org. (Accessed 4/2014).

Lespedeza virginica is a perennial herb 0.3-1 m tall (Radford et al. 1968), sparsely slender-branched, somewhat appressed-hairy; stipules linear, brownish. 

Leaves alternate, crowded, 3-parted, leaflets linear to narrowly oblong, 0.6-3 cm long, ascending, to about 0.5 cm wide, finely appressed hairy on both sides. 

Flowers of two kinds: those with rose-purple petals, 0.5-0.7 cm long, pea-flower-shaped, wings longer than keel and banner calyx lobes 0.1-0.2 cm long, unequal (Radford et al. 1968), inflorescence of small, dense, branched clusters near ends of stems and closed flowers without petals lower on stem. 

Fruit dry, mostly from closed flowers, 0.3-0.6 cm long, flattened, broadly egg-shaped, appressed hairy especially when immature; 1-seeded; blooms July-Sept. 

Wetland status: UPL. 

Frequency in NYC: Infrequent, (possibly seeded into a restoration in Idlewild). 

Origin: Native. 

Habitat: Open, sandy soil. 

Notes: Seeds eaten by quail, plants eaten by deer and other wildlife (Yatskievych 2006).