Tag Archives: Butterfly Pea

Wildflower Identification: Clitoria Mariana vs Centrosema virginianum

Outside of a very few states, Clitoria mariana (Butterfly Pea) and Centrosema virginianum (Spurred Butterfly Pea) are the only species in their respective genera most of in the United States.  The Clitoria and Centrosema genera share a characteristic that is rare in Fabaceae – a twist in the pedicel turns the flower “upside down” – the largest petal – the “standard” is below the other petals (keel and wings) rather than above them as is the case with the rest of the family.  These two species appear quite similar, so any confusion in the U.S. with identification is usually between these two species.  There are a couple of key characteristics that can help.

Butterfly Pea – Clitoria mariana or Centrosema virginianum?

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Spurred Butterfly Pea – Centrosema virginianum – Added to USWildflowers’ Database

Spurred Butterfly Pea, a native species, has been added to the USWildflowers database (10/29/2013.) Scientific name is Centrosema virginianum.  Also known as Climbing Butterfly Pea, Wild Blue Vine, Virginia Centro, and Butterflypea.  Photo below was taken at Camp Vesper Point in Hamilton County, TN on August 17, 2013.  Go to the Spurred Butterfly Pea detail page for more photos and information.

Spurred Butterfly Pea, Climbing Butterfly Pea, Wild Blue Vine, Virginia Centro, Butterflypea - Centrosema virginianum

Spurred Butterfly Pea – Centrosema virginianum

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