Anthyllis barba L.

Common names

Jupiter's Beard

Article sources

Bean

An evergreen shrub growing 8 to 12 ft high on walls in this country; branchlets crooked, covered with appressed, silky hairs. Leaves pinnate, 112 to 2 in. long, composed of nine to about nineteen leaflets. Leaflets linear-oblong, 13 to 1 in. long; covered with silvery hairs, especially beneath and at the edges, which towards the base are often incurved. Flowers pea-shaped, pale yellow, crowded in rounded heads at the end of short twigs; each head of flowers is 34 to 1 in. across; calyx silky hairy, 14 in. long.

Native of S.W. Europe and the Mediterranean region; cultivated in England since the middle of the seventeenth century. It is too tender to thrive in the open ground, but makes a charming shrub for a wall, where its sheen of silvery grey and (in May and June) clusters of yellow flowers are very effective. At Kew it is occasionally injured even growing against a wall. Seeds are said sometimes to ripen in this country, but the plant has, as a rule, to be increased by cuttings.

Genus

Anthyllis

Other species in the genus