Sunday, July 1, 2012

Sainfoin: Pink and healthy hay

Close-up of Sainfoin flower spike
Near Regina, Saskatchewan: Tall pink roadside prairie wildflowers caught my attention this weekend, so I snapped a few shots, then looked up this plant. This plant with lovely pink flowers is Sainfoin, which sounded as if it was French, and should mean something...

(Ta-da! Google Translator says sain foin = healthy hay.)

And yes, Sainfoin was introduced from Europe as a forage crop, one that's apparently good for grass and hay-eating creatures to munch.

Sainfoin is a legume, with vetch-like leaves and spikes of pea-blossom-shaped flowers. And it has lovely pink (light, bright and lavender) flowers, striped with reddish-purple.

Wildflowers across the Prairies says it's usually found in uncultivated fields or field margins, and may spread to ditches.

These plants were near old (abandoned?) farm buildings. at the edge of a marsh.  

Tall upright stalks of Sainfoin, blowing in the wind. 

Prairie Wildflower: Sainfoin (Onobrychis viciafolia) 
Location: Grid road north of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
Photo Date: July 1, 2012


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