Lathyrus cicera

Lathyrus cicera is a species of wild pea known by the common names red pea,[1] red vetchling[2] and flatpod peavine. It is native to Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, and it is known from other places as an introduced species. This is a hairless annual herb producing a slightly winged stem. The leaves are each made up of two leaflike linear leaflets 3 to 6 centimeters (1.2 to 2.4 in) long. They also bear branched, curling tendrils. The inflorescence holds a single pea flower 1 to 1.5 centimeters (0.39 to 0.59 in) wide which is a varying shade of red. The fruit is a hairless dehiscent legume pod.

Lathyrus cicera
Lathyrus cicera.JPG
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Genus: Lathyrus
L. cicera
Binomial name
Lathyrus cicera

This is one pea species known to cause lathyrism; nevertheless, as cicerchia it figured among the comestibles enjoyed by the fortunate Milanese, listed at length by Bonvesin de la Riva in his "Marvels of Milan" (1288).[3]


  1. ^ USDA, NRCS (n.d.). "Lathyrus cicera". The PLANTS Database ( Greensboro, North Carolina: National Plant Data Team. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
  2. ^ BSBI List 2007 (xls). Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-06-26. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
  3. ^ Noted by John Dickie, Delizia! The Epic History of Italians and Their Food (New York, 2008), p. 37.

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