Medicago spp.

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A genus comprising around 100 accepted species of flowering plants in the legume family originating from the Mediterranean basin. They are mostly low-growing perennial herbs with one or two exceptions; M. arborea (tree medick) is a shrub and the forage crop plant alfalfa (M. sativa) can grow up to 1 m. In cultivation they are grown for their attractive pea-like usually yellow flowers and trifoliate leaves that resemble those of the clover plant. Medicago truncatula is used in genetic research as a model (representative) legume.

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