Lens is a genus in the Fabaceae family (Fabaceae) of legumes, peas and beans. Species in this genus have characteristic edible seeds which are commonly known as lentils or pulses. They are consumed across the world as food, particularly the species Lens culinaris and Lens esculenta. This genus contains around 5 annual plants, however this number is debated and scientific studies are ongoing. These plants are herbaceous climbers with pinnately divided foliage and small, pea-like white to pink-purple flowers. Flowers lead onto small, flattened seed pods containing 1-2 seeds which are shaped like lenses. Typically these plants grow to under half a metre in height and spread. Lentils are historically one of the oldest domesticated crops.