Lesser Hop Trefoil
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Lesser Hop Trefoil
A Native Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Lesser Hop Trefoil, Suckling clover, Small Hops Clover, Lesser Trefoil, Yellow Shamrock
Botanical name: Trifolium dubium    Family: Fabaceae (Pea family)
Synonyms: Trifolium minus, Trifolium filiforme, Trifolium luteolum

Lesser Hop Trefoil is an annual herb, with stems erect to decumbent, 10-30 cm. Flowers arise 5-15, in compact heads in leaf-axils, carried on flower-cluster-stalks 0.5-3 cm. Flowers are pale yellow, aging to brown, 3-4 mm; standard narrowly boat-shaped, smooth, tip pointed. Sepal-cup is about 2 mm, veins 5. Flower-stalks are less than 1 mm, after flowering drooping. Leaves are trifoliate; stipules obliquely ovate, 4-8 mm, base rounded, margins finely toothed, tip pointed. Leaf-stalks are shorter than or equal to leaflets; end leaflet-stalk longer than lateral leaf-stalks. Leaflets are obovate, 5-10 x 3-8 mm, veins 6-8 pairs, base wedge-shaped, margins entire proximally, obscurely minutely toothed distally, tip rounded or notched. Pods are oblong, 1.5-2 mm, shortly beaked; stipe about 1 mm. Lesser Hop Trefoil is native to Europe and neighboring parts of Asia and Africa. It is naturalized in India, including the Himalaya. Flowering: April-September.

Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh Photographed in Mcleodganj, Himachal Pradesh.

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