Agro-morphological characterisation of common vetch and its close relatives

M van de Wouw, Nigel Maxted, Brian Ford-Lloyd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)


The Vicia sativa aggregate, which includes the common vetch, is a complex of six closely related taxa which combines cultivated, weedy and wild forms. In this study 454 accessions with an emphasis on Mediterranean and Central Asian accessions have been compared for 22 key agro-morphological and phenological characters. The agronomic potential of the different members of the aggregate is assessed and useful variation existing in the collection is determined. Geographic patterns of the agronomic variation are studied to determine sources of useful variation. In both subsp. cordata and subsp. sativa accessions were found which had higher yields than the checks, consisting of three promising accessions. Subsp. macrocarpa needs a longer growing season than the other taxa to reach its full potential. The other three taxa in the aggregate all had quite low yields. Important variation in shattering of pods and in tolerance to moderate frost and resistance to the Sitona weevil was found in most subspecies of the aggregate. Variation in phenological characters appeared to be related to the latitude from which the accession was collected.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-292
Number of pages12
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2003


  • geographic distribution
  • agro-morphology
  • Vicia sativa aggregate
  • phenology


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