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Plantwise Technical Factsheet

fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

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Description

An erect, stiff, strongly scented, annual herb, up to 60 cm tall; taproot well-developed and roots much branched. Stem solitary or basally branched, terete, slightly pubescent, green to purple. Leaves alternate, trifoliolate; stipules triangular, small, adnate to the petiole; petiole grooved above, 1-4(-6) cm long; rachis short; leaflets obovate or oblong, 1.5-4 cm x 0.5-2 cm, upper part of margin denticulate. Flowers solitary, axillary, subsessile, 12-15 mm long; calyx campanulate, finely pubescent, tube 4.5 mm long, lobes 5, 2 mm long; standard hood-shaped, obovate, 12-15 mm x 6-7 mm, clawed, pale yellow; wings obovate, 12 mm x 2.5 mm, clawed, auriculate, pale yellow; keel ladle-shaped, 7 mm x 2 mm, clawed, entirely split dorsally, ventrally split near the base, bi-auriculate, pale yellow to white; stamens diadelphous (9 + 1); pistil with sessile ovary, glabrous style and capitate stigma. Fruit a straight to occasionally sickle-shaped, linear pod, 5-19 cm x 0.2-0.4 cm, glabrous, with fine longitudinal veins, slightly bulging over the 10-20 seeds; beak 2-3 cm long. Seed oblong-rhomboidal, 3-5 mm x 2-3 mm, with a deep furrow dividing it into two unequal lobes, with rounded corners, rather smooth, brownish. Seedling with epigeal germination.

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