pale form

LIFE HISTORY AND EFFECTS OF INVASION: Crown vetch is a serious management threat to natural areas due to its seeding ability and rapid vegetative spreading by creeping roots. Flowers appear from May to August and produce few to several seeds. Seeds can remain dormant and viable for over fifteen years.

Very little research information is currently available regarding the control of crown vetch. Research has largely been restricted to the establishment and management of this perennial legume. As a result, a limited number of control measures have become available from the unpublished notes of active natural resource managers. Further field research is needed to adequately address this species. However, preventative measures can and should be implemented: do not use crown vetch for erosion control. Encourage your local highway department to stop using it and replace it with less invasive species for roadside use.

red form

DISTRIBUTION AND HABITAT: Crown vetch (also known as "trailing crown vetch") is an exotic perennial frequently used as a ground cover for erosion control and as a green fertilizer crop. It is used as a bank stabilizer along roads and waterways. The plant's original habitat includes Europe, southeast Asia and northern Africa. The plant's distribution in the U.S. encompasses most of the northern U.S. east of South Dakota.