Black Medick Medicago lupulina LinnaeusNon-native

Status:

Black Medick is native to Europe, North Africa, and most of Asia. It was first introduced to the United States in the late 1700s or early 1800s. Since its introduction, Black Medick has spread and is present in all fifty states. In Maryland, Black Medick is common throughout the state. Blooming typically occurs from late May through August, but we have records in the MBP database of plants blooming in all months except February! The Smithsonian's Flora of Washington-Baltimore Special Collections has a specimen collected in Baltimore by Donnell Smith in 1880.

Description:

Black Medick is very similar to Field Clover and care should be taken with identification. The leaflets of Black Medick typically have very small mucronate tips whereas the leaflets of Field Clover do not. The upper petals of the flowers of Black Medick are smooth while the upper petals of Field Clover are conspicuously grooved. Another easy way to differentiate between Black Medick and the Trifolium yellow clovers is that Black Medick produces black seeds that are easy to see once blooming is complete. The Trifolium yellow clovers have inconspicuous yellow/brown seeds that often fall to the ground instead of staying on the plant.

Where to find:

Black Medick is a common component of open road edges, fallow fields, and weedy areas across the state.

There are 174 records in the project database.

View species at Maryland Plant Atlas

View Norton-Brown Herbarium specimens

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Black Medick blooming at Fort Smallwood Park, Maryland (5/5/2013). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

Black Medick blooming and in seed in Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (6/24/2017). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

Black Medick blooming in Washington Co., Maryland (5/26/2014). Photo by Jim Stasz. (MBP list)

Black Medick in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (9/17/2010). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Black Medick in Prince George's Co., Maryland (5/4/2017). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Black Medick in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (5/2/2017). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Black Medick blooming in Prince George's Co., Maryland (6/15/2016). Photo by Robert Ferraro. (MBP list)

Black Medick in Talbot Co., Maryland (5/16/2015). Photo by Jim Brighton. (MBP list)

Black Medick blooming in Allegany Co., Maryland (6/1/2014). Photo by Jim Stasz. (MBP list)

Black Medick in Washington Co., Maryland (5/27/2017). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Black Medick in Allegany Co., Maryland (6/4/2016). Photo by Kimberly Booth. (MBP list)

Black Medick in Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (7/23/2014). Photo by Jim Brighton. (MBP list)

Black Medick blooming in Baltimore Co., Maryland (5/20/1981). Photo by Jim Stasz. (MBP list)

Black Medick blooming in Calvert Co., Maryland (6/8/2017). Photo by Tyler Bell. (MBP list)


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