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Herbaceous Perennial

Hippocrepis comosa
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

horseshoe vetch

A vigorous, creeping woody-based perennial, about 40cm tall, with mid-green leaves to 10cm long divided into leaflets, and bearing heads of up to 12 lemon-yellow flowers from late spring to late summer

Other common names
unshoe-the-horse
Synonyms
Coronilla comosa
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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Alkaline
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Yellow Green
Summer Yellow Green
Autumn Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Fabaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Genus

Hippocrepis are herbaceous perennials or shrubs, with pinnate leaves and yellow, pea-like flowers followed by long, narrow pods

Name status

Correct

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in poor, well-drained, alkaline soil in full sun

Propagation

Propagate by seed in containers in a cold frame in spring or autumn, propagate by root cuttings of non-flowering shoots in summer

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildflower meadow
  • Wildlife gardens
Pruning

No pruning required

Pests

Generally pest-free

Diseases

Generally disease-free

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