Monographs Details: Astragalus kentrophyta var. douglasii Barneby
Authors:Rupert C. Barneby
Authority: Barneby, Rupert C. 1964. Atlas of North American Astragalus. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 13(1): 1-596.
Family:Fabaceae
Description:Latin Diagnosis - habitu var. Jessiae et var. ungulatum, legumine lanceolato hanc et var. elatum propius simulans, sed ab his omnibus pube basifixa absimilis; a var. Kentrophyta legumine multo angustiori, foliolisque utrinque strigulosis, a var. implexi formis hystricinis albifloris imprimis ovulis binis diagnoscitur. Patria ab aliis speciei varietatibus ut videtur valde remota.

Variety Description - Prostrate, densely matted, the subcanescent stems repeatedly branched, becoming suffruticulose at base, up to 16 cm. long, the internodes up to 0.8 cm. long, mostly less, the herbage greenish-cinereous, strigulose with appressed or subappressed hairs up to 0.5-0.6 mm. long, becoming prickly, the leaflets pubescent on both sides; stipules dimorphic, the lowest short, connate into a bidentate sheath, the upper ones lanceolate, connate at base and drawn out into stiff, spinescent free blades; leaves 1-1.7 cm. long, with 5 (7) linear-lanceolate leaflets 5-12 mm. long, the terminal spinule 1.5-2 mm. long; peduncles subobsolete; calyx 4.7-5.2 mm. long, the tube 2.2-2.4 mm., the spinulose teeth 2.3-3 mm. long; petals apparently whitish; banner narrowly obovate, about 5.8 mm. long, 3.8 mm. wide; wings as long, the claws 2.3 mm., the blades 3.8 mm. long, 1.4 mm. wide; keel 4.5 mm. long, the claws 2.3 mm., the blades 2.5 mm. long, 1.3 mm. wide; pod lanceolate in profile, very slightly incurved, 5-5.5 mm. long, 2 mm. in diameter; ovules 2.

Distribution and Ecology - Sandy ground, to be looked for on dunes or eroded river banks, probably at low elevations, known only from "Oregon" or the "Walla Walla region, Washington," very likely within or near the Great Bend of the Columbia River, southeastern Washington, or perhaps adjoining Oregon.

Discussion:The Douglas kentrophyta was first discovered by David Douglas, presumably either in 1833 (G) or 1830 (K), when he traveled up the Columbia River on his way to the Blue Mountains. The Douglas specimen in the Torrey herbarium is only a fragment of the upper part of a stem, and even though it bears both flowers and fruits, it has been insufficient for analysis. The sheet, which has no more precise label than "Oregon, Douglas" (a duplicate gives "Columbia River ) was annotated by Rydberg as Kentrophyta impensa and was cited in my revision (1951, p. 101) as var. elatus, which the lanceolate pod and single pair of ovules suggest. I had overlooked the basal attachment of the pubescence and had not yet seen the Brandegee and Tweedy collections from Walla Walla, at the time still incorporated in the Canby herbarium. Being unable to fit the Washington plant into any previously recognized variety of A. Kentrophyta, I am obliged to describe a new entity. The remotely disjunct occurrence of a kentrophyta near the Great Bend of the Columbia, which occasioned a good deal of wonder in the past, now appears rational. Really exact data of locality is still not available.
Distribution:Oregon United States of America North America| Washington United States of America North America|