/les'pi dee"zeuh/, n.
any shrub or herb belonging to the genus Lespedeza, of the legume family, having trifoliolate leaves and lavender flowers, grown for forage, soil improvement, etc.
[ < NL (1803), after V. M. de Zespedez (misread as Lespedez), 18th-century Spanish governor of East Florida]

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also called  Bush Clover,  

      any member of a genus (Lespedeza) of herbaceous plants in the pea family (Fabaceae), some of which are useful as forage and green manure crops. The approximately 40 species in the genus are native to North America, tropical and East Asia, and Australia. The lespedezas may be roughly grouped as herbaceous perennials, small shrubs, and annuals. Lespedezas are either erect or trailing in habit, and some perennial species can reach heights of up to 3 m (10 feet). The best-known species have alternate, toothless leaves that are made up of three leaflets. All lespedezas are adapted to warm, humid climates.

      Lespedezas are among the principal hay and pasture crops in the southeastern and south-central United States (along with alfalfa). Two of the most widely used annual species are the common lespedeza (L. striata) and the Korean lespedeza (L. stipulacea), both native to Asia. A perennial species, the sericea lespedeza (L. cuneata), is also used in American agriculture, both as a pasture crop and to combat soil erosion. Owing to its great root system, its dense growth canopy, and its ability to grow on badly eroded soils, the sericea lespedeza is extremely useful in American soil conservation. Some shrublike lespedeza species, such as the bicolour lespedeza (L. bicolor), are grown as ornamentals. Lespedezas are also valuable for birds and other wildlife, affording them food and cover.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • lespedeza — n. Any shrubby or herbaceous plant of the genus {Lespedeza}, widely used for forage, soil improvement, and especially hay in the Southern U.S. Syn: bush clover. [WordNet 1.5] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • lespedeza — ☆ lespedeza [les΄pə dē′zə ] n. [ModL Lespedeza, erroneously for * Zespedesa, after V. M. de Zespedes, 18th c. Sp governor of E Florida] any of a genus (Lespedeza) of annual or perennial plants of the pea family, cultivated for forage, hay, soil… …   English World dictionary

  • Lespedēza — (L. Mich.); Pflanzengattung aus der Familie der Papilionaceae Hedysareae, Diadelphie, Dekandrie L., benannt nach Lespedeza, ehemaligem Gouverneur von Florida; Arten in Nordamerika, China, Sibirien …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Lespedeza —   Lespedeza …   Wikipedia Español

  • Lespedeza — Taxobox name = Lespedeza image width = 240px image caption = Lespedeza bicolor regnum = Plantae divisio = Magnoliophyta classis = Magnoliopsida ordo = Fabales familia = Fabaceae subfamilia = Faboideae tribus = Desmodieae genus = Lespedeza… …   Wikipedia

  • lespedeza — noun shrubby or herbaceous plants widely used for forage, soil improvement, and especially hay in southern United States • Syn: ↑bush clover • Hypernyms: ↑woody plant, ↑ligneous plant • Hyponyms: ↑bicolor lespediza, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • Lespedeza — ID 46729 Symbol Key LESPE Common Name lespedeza Family Fabaceae Category Dicot Division Magnoliophyta US Nativity N/A US/NA Plant Yes State Distribution AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NE,… …   USDA Plant Characteristics

  • lespedeza — korėjinė dryžuolė statusas T sritis vardynas apibrėžtis Pupinių šeimos pašarinis augalas (Kummerowia stipulacea), paplitęs rytų Azijoje. atitikmenys: lot. Kummerowia stipulacea angl. Korean bush clover; Korean lespedeza; lespedeza šaltinis… …   Lithuanian dictionary (lietuvių žodynas)

  • lespedeza — noun Etymology: New Latin, irregular from V. M. de Zespedes fl1785 Spanish governor of East Florida Date: 1884 any of a genus (Lespedeza) of herbaceous or shrubby plants of the legume family including some widely used for forage, soil improvement …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • lespedeza — noun Any of many leguminous plants, of the genus Lespedeza, including bush clover …   Wiktionary

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