South Dakota Native Plant Research
Astragalus crassicarpus

Scientific Name

Astragalus crassicarpus


Download Seed: The black seeds of ground plum are 2-3 mm long. (60 KB)

Download Seedling: Ground plum seedling grown in greenhouse from seed. (120 KB)

Download Vegetative: The leaves contain 15-27 leaflets. (137 KB)

Download Flowering: The flower is made up of wings and a clawed keel. (123 KB)

Download Fruiting: The ground plum begins producing legumes in May. (78 KB)

Family Name


Common Name

Buffalo bean, buffalo pea, ground plum

Native American Name

Dakota: "Pte ta Wote (*P tey taw Whoa Te)


Astragalus crassicarpus is a(n) annual and perennial herbaceous, which grows 1 dm to 6 dm in height. This species is commonly found land in the Great Plains, Manitoba, Missouri, Texas, Montana, Oklahoma, Iowa, and Minnesota. The leaves are alternate. Astragalus crassicarpus has raspberry pink purple flowers that bloom from April to June.

Additional Notes

*In the 1980's Native Americans on the Lake Traverse Reservation began to document "Pte ta Wote" in this format.

Horticulture Notes

Seed Collection: Collect seed pods in mid to late summer
Germination: Scarification, stratification, fall or spring sow
Vegetative Propagation:
Soils: All soil conditions
Light: Full sun
Water: Dry to moist
Notes: Dry fruit filled with seed from the previous season can usually be found around each plant. With a little luck you might be able to find two or three, if not more, full pods.

Astragalus crassicarpus