Wild Florida Photo - Galactia purshii - Pursh's milkpea

Galactia purshii

Pursh's milkpea

Synonym(s): Galactia mollis, Galactia michauxii, Galactia floridana var. longeracemosa

Florida native

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This vine can be found in much of the Florida peninsula.
This milkpea has pink or purplish pea-shaped flowers that are larger than some of the other members of this genus, usually 10-18mm (slightly less than 1/2 - 3/4 in.). The stems are covered with appressed hairs and mostly prostrate, but occasionally twining or climbing. Leaflets are tri-foliate with short petioles, the petiole being shorter than the terminal leaflet.
The genus Galactia has been undergoing a recent reclassification, with the number of species in Florida going from a half dozen to around twice that. The species name purshii had fallen out of use, but is now reapplied by some botanists to plants that had previously been considered other species. G. purshii was named honoring Frederick Traugott Pursh (1774-1820) by Nicaise Auguste Desvaux (1784-1856) a French botanist at the botanical garden in Angers, France. Pursh was a German-American botanist born in Saxony and educated at the Dresden Botanical Gardens. He came to the United States in 1799 and published Flora americae septentrionalis; or A Systematic Arrangement and Description of The Plants of North America after moving to London.


Galactia purshii is a member of the Fabaceae - Pea family.

Other species of the Galactia genus in the Wild Florida Photo database:
  Galactia regularis - DOWNY MILKPEA
  Galactia volubilis - EASTERN MILKPEA
  Galactia elliottii - ELLIOTT'S MILKPEA
  Galactia mollis - SOFT MILKPEA

Date record last modified: Feb 23, 2018

Paul Rebmann Nature Photography at pixels.com