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Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)
Perennial Forbs Around Las Vegas, Vegetation Around Las Vegas
Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)

General: Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis) is an invasive, short-lived perennial forb with many spreading to upright stems, 3-part leaves, and many, small pea-type flowers towards the tip of the stems. Flowers white or yellow.

Around Las Vegas, Yellow Sweetclover is a fairly common weed in vegetation communities in moist areas on desert flats, bajadas, and moderate slopes in the lower mountains in the Lower Sonoran (Creosote-Bursage Flats) and Upper Sonoran (Mojave Desert Scrub) life zones.

Yellow Sweetclover is an invasive weed. Around Las Vegas, this species is uncommon -- let's all work to make sure it stays that way. Look for this weedy species in the alkaline meadow at Red Spring (Calico Basin) at Red Rock Canyon NCA and other areas with soil moisture.

Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)

Family: Pea (Fabaceae).

Other Names: ribbed melilot, field melilot, cornilla real, Melilotus alba, Melilotus albus, Melilotus arvensis, Melilotus leucanthus, Melilotus lutea.

Plant Form: Tall, upright forb with several stalks and many flowers along the stems at the top of the plant.

Height: To about 6 feet.

Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)

Stems: Usually several main stems that branch out from the base; green.

Leaves: Divided into three separate lobes, each of which is oblong.

Flowers: Blooms during spring through early fall. Inflorescence: many-flowered raceme. Flowers bilateral (typical pea flower); white or yellow.

Seeds: Small bean pod with one seed.

Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)

Habitat: Many habitat, especially open, disturbed sites with some soil moisture.

Elevation: Up to about 5,000 feet.

Distribution: Throughout North America (US, Canada, Mexico); native to Eurasia.


Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)
Many-flowered raceme of white or yellow pea flowers
Yellow Sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)
White pea flower

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate. Names generally follow the USDA database.
copyright; Last updated 141118

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