TALL BUSH LESPEDEZA
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Lespedeza stuevei  Nutt.
Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Perennial
Height: 20-60 inches
Family: Fabaceae - Bean Family
Flowering Period:   July, August, September
Also Called: Tall bush clover, stueve's bush clover, velvety lespedeza.
Stems: Erect or ascending, simple or branched above, very leafy, densely soft- or appressed-hairy, ridged.
Leaves: Alternate, short-stalked; stipules linear awl-shaped to bristle-like, less than .2 inch long; pinnately 3-foliolate; leaflets oblong-elliptic or less commonly egg-shaped, .2 to 1.2 inches long, up to .4 inch wide, minutely soft-hairy above, densely velvety-hairy beneath; tips rounded, often with abruptly sharp points.
Inflorescences: Racemes, dense, on stalks in upper leaf axils, 6-14 flowered.
Flowers: Both open and self-pollinating flowers lacking petals present; calyces bell-shaped, up to 1/5 inch long; lobes 5, upper 2 lobes united less than half length; corollas papilionaceous, lavender-pink to rose-purple, 1/5 to 1/3 inch long; banner and wings nearly equal, longer than keel; banner darker purple at base; stamens 10, 9 united, 1 free.
Fruits: Pods, 1-seeded, ovate to elliptic, about 1/4 inch long, sparse to densely appressed-hairy; seeds about 1/10 inch long, olive to dark brown, smooth, shiny. Dense axillary clusters of self-pollinating flowers form most of the mature pods on the plant.
Habitat: Sandy prairies, dunes, fencerows, roadsides, and dry, rocky or sandy open woods.
Distribution: East 1/2 of Kansas.
Comments: Found in colonies. Named for a Prussian botanist and pharmacist Hermann Heinrich Wilhelm Theodor Stüwe (1875-?).

Tall bush lespedeza flowers
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Tall bush lespedeza inflorescence
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Tall bush lespedeza
136 KB
Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Tall bush lespedeza
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Tall bush lespedeza leaflets
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Tall bush lespedeza leaves
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas