Taxon: Medicago truncatula Gaertn.

Genus: Medicago
Section: Spirocarpos
Subsection: Pachyspireae
Family: Fabaceae (alt.Leguminosae)
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Trifolieae
Nomen number: 23705
Place of publication: Fruct. sem. pl. 2:350, t. 155, fig. 7. 1791
Link to protologue:
Name Verified on: 11-Jun-1987 by ARS Systematic Botanists. Last Changed: 02-Oct-2017
Species priority site is: Western Regional PI Station (W6)
Accessions: 406 in National Plant Germplasm System (GoogleMap)

Common names:

Economic Importance:

  • Environmental: soil improver (fide Trop Leg; Cover Crop Database)
  • Animal food: forage (fide Leg Queensl)
  • Gene sources: potential for disease resistance in alfalfa (fide Agron Monog 29:119. 1988)
  • Gene sources: research in plant biology (fide Genet Research 89:108. 2009)
  • Vertebrate poisons: mammals (fide Kellerman et al.)
  • Weed: potential seed contaminant (fide Can J Bot 67:3270. 1989)

Distributional Range:


  • Africa

    • Macaronesia: Portugal Madeira Islands; Spain Canary Islands
    • Northern Africa: Algeria ; Egypt ; Libya ; Morocco ; Tunisia
  • Asia-Temperate

    • Caucasus: Armenia ; Azerbaijan ; Georgia
    • Middle Asia: Turkmenistan
    • Western Asia: Cyprus ; Israel ; Jordan ; Lebanon ; Syria ; Turkey
  • Europe

    • Eastern Europe: Ukraine
    • Southeastern Europe: Former Yugoslavia ; Greece ; Italy
    • Southwestern Europe: France ; Portugal ; Spain

  • Naturalized

  • Australasia

    • Australia: Australia
  • Southern America

    • Southern South America: Argentina ; Uruguay

  • Cultivated


  • Aldén, B., S. Ryman, & M. Hjertson Svensk Kulturväxtdatabas, SKUD (Swedish Cultivated and Utility Plants Database; online resource on 2012 (Kulturvaxtdatabas)
  • Ali, S. I. & S. M. H. Jafri, eds. Flora of Libya. (F Libya)
  • Badri, M. et al. 2007. Quantitative and molecular genetic variation in sympatric populations of Medicago laciniata and M. truncatula (Fabaceae):relationships with eco-geographical factors Genet. Res. 89:107-122.
  • Botanical Society of the British Isles BSBI taxon database (on-line resource). (BSBI)
  • Davis, P. H., ed. Flora of Turkey and the east Aegean islands. (F Turk)
  • Eriksson, O. et al. Flora of Macaronesia: checklist of vascular plants, ed. 2. (L Macar ed2)
  • Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) 2010. Ecocrop (on-line resource). (Ecocrop)
  • Greuter, W. et al., eds. Med-Checklist. (L Medit)
  • Hacker, J. B. A guide to herbaceous and shrub legumes of Queensland. 1990 (Leg Queensl)
  • Heyn, C. C. 1963. The annual species of Medicago Scripta Hierosolymitana 12:95.
  • Hnatiuk, R. J. Census of Australian vascular plants. Australian Flora and Fauna Series No. 11. (L Aust)
  • Instituto de Botánica Darwinion Flora del Conosur. Catálogo de las plantas vasculares. (F ConoSur)
  • Integrated Botanical Information System (IBIS) Australian plant common name database (on-line resource). (Aust Pl Common Names)
  • International Seed Testing Association A Multilingual Glossary of Common Plant-Names 1. Field crops, grasses and vegetables, ed. 2. (Mult Glossary Crops)
  • Izquierdo Z., I. et al., eds. Lista de especies silvestres de Canarias: hongos, plantas y animales terrestres. 2004 (L Canarias)
  • Jahandiez, E. & R. Maire Catalogue des plantes du Maroc. (L Maroc)
  • Kellerman, T. S. et al. Plant poisonings and mycotoxicoses of livestock in Southern Africa. 1988 (Kellerman et al.)
  • Komarov, V. L. et al., eds. Flora SSSR. (F USSR)
  • Lesins, K. A. & I. Lesins 1979. Genus Medicago (Leguminosae). A taxogenetic study. 1979 (Gen Medicago) 166.
  • Mouterde, P. Nouvelle flore du Liban et de la Syrie. (F Liban)
  • National Academy of Sciences Tropical legumes: resources for the future. 1979 (Trop Leg)
  • Pignatti, S. Flora d'Italia. (F Ital)
  • Porcher, M. H. et al. Searchable World Wide Web Multilingual Multiscript Plant Name Database (MMPND) (on-line resource). (Pl Names)
  • Pottier-Alapetite, G. Flore de la Tunisie: Angiospermes-Dicotyledones. (F Tunis)
  • Quézel, P. & S. Santa Nouvelle flore de l'Algerie. (F Alger)
  • Quiros, C. F. & G. R. Bauchan 1988. The genus Medicago and the origin of the Medicago sativa complex. In A. A. Hanson et al., eds., Alfalfa and alfalfa improvement Agronomy 29:93-124.
  • Rehm, S. Multilingual dictionary of agronomic plants. 1994 (Dict Rehm)
  • Sales, F. & I. C. Hedge 1994. Medicago L. (Leguminosae): typification and nomenclature Anales Jard. Bot. Madrid 51:323.
  • Small, E. 1981. A numerical analysis of major groupings in Medicago employing traditionally used characters Canad. J. Bot. 59:1555.
  • Small, E. & M. Jomphe 1989. A synopsis of the genus Medicago (Leguminosae) Canad. J. Bot. 32:3270.
  • Small, E. et al. 1981. The taxonomic value of floral characters in tribe Trigonelleae (Leguminosae), with special reference to Medicago Canad. J. Bot. 59:1581.
  • Small, E. et al. 1991. Medicago truncatula f. laxicycla (Leguminosae), a new taxon with loose fruit coiling promoting rapid germination of the fruit-retained seeds Pl. Syst. Evol. 174:37-46.
  • Smythies, B. E. Flora of Spain and the Balearic Islands: checklist of vascular plants. Englera 3:1-882. (L Spain)
  • Täckholm, V. Students' flora of Egypt, ed. 2. (SF Egypt)
  • Townsend, C. C. & E. Guest Flora of Iraq. (F Iraq)
  • Tutin, T. G. et al., eds. Flora europaea. (F Eur)
  • University of California Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program UC SAREP on-line cover crop database (on-line resource). (Cover Crop Database)
  • Yakovlev, G. P. et al. Legumes of Northern Eurasia. 1996 (Leg NEurasia)
  • Zohary, M. & N. Feinbrun-Dothan Flora palaestina. (F Palest)
  • Zuloaga, F. O. & O. Morrone, eds. Catálogo de las plantas vasculares de la República Argentina. I. Pteridophyta, Gymnospermae y Angiospermae (Monocotyledonae), II. Dicotyledonae. Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 60, 74. (L Argent)

Check other web resources for Medicago truncatula Gaertn. :

  • Flora Europaea: Database of European Plants (ESFEDS)
  • Flora del Conosur: Catálogo de las Plantas Vasculares del Conosur
  • AVH: Australia's Virtual Herbarium
  • TROPICOS: Nomenclatural and Specimen Database of the Missouri Botanical Garden
  • ILDIS: International Legume Database & Information Service
  • Mansfeld: Mansfeld's World Databas of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops
  • ePIC: Electronic Plant Information Centre of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
  • AGRICOLA: Article Citation Database or NAL Catalog of USDA's National Agricultural Library
  • Entrez: NCBI's search engine for PubMed citations, GenBank sequences, etc.


  • Fruit: U.S. National Seed Herbarium image
  • Seed: U.S. National Seed Herbarium image