What is Creeping Indigo?

Creeping Indigo is a short-lived herbaceous plant with creeping or scrambling stems. Its alternately arranged leaves are once-compound with 5-11 leaflets these oblong leaflets (5-25 mm long) have hairless or sparsely hairy upper surfaces and densely hairy undersides. Its small pink or pinkish-orange pea-shaped flowers (4-5 mm long) are arranged in elongated clusters up to 10 cm long its narrow cylindrical pods (15-25 mm long) are borne in a backwards facing position.


HABITAT 

A very common weed of lawns, gardens, footpaths, roadsides, disturbed sites and waste areas.


STEM AND LEAVES 

The stems are slightly flattened, and sparsely hairy (i.e. puberulent). The alternately arranged leaves are once-compound (i.e. pinnate) with 5-11 alternatively arranged leaflets. Their leaflets (5-25 mm long and 4-10 mm wide) are oblong in shape with entire margins. These leaflets are hairless (i.e. glabrous) or sparsely hairy (i.e. puberulent) on the upper surface, while their undersides are densely covered with small close-lying hairs (i.e. appressed pubescent).

FLOWERS 

The small pea-shaped flowers (4-5 mm long) are pink or pinkish-orange in colour. They are arranged in elongated clusters (i.e. spike-like racemes) up to 10 cm long. Each flower has a larger upper petal (i.e. standard), two side petals (i.e. wings) and two lower petals that are fused together and folded (i.e. a keel). The flowers also have ten stamens and an elongated ovary topped with a style and stigma. The fruit are cylindrical pods (15-25 mm long) that turn from green to dark brown in colour as they mature. These fruit are borne in a backwards facing position (i.e. they are deflexed) and are sparsely hairy (i.e. puberulent).


REPRODUCTION AND DISPERSAL 

This species reproduces by seed, which are probably dispersed by mowers and in contaminated soil. They may also be spread by water and in mud attached to animals and vehicles.


Information taken from https://www.facebook.com/groups/1393073010988149/ - Nina's Warriors (Creeping Indigo Resource)