Scientific Name:
Medicago L., Sp. Pl. 778-781 (1753)
Vernacular Name(s):

Annual to perennial, procumbent to erect herbs or shrubs.  Lvs pinnately 3-foliolate; principal lateral veins thin and straight, terminating at leaflet margin often in a tooth; stipules adnate to petiole. Infl. axillary, racemose, sometimes forming dense heads, few- to many-flowered; bracts present subtending fls.  Calyx teeth 5, ± equal. Corolla deciduous after flowering.  Vexillary stamen free, the others connate;  anthers uniform.  Style glabrous; stigma subcapitate.  Pod 2-valved, falcate or spirally coiled, scarcely dehiscent, spinous or not armed, few- to many-seeded, rarely 1–2-seeded; seeds estrophiolate, smooth and rounded in N.Z. spp.

[From:  Webb et al. (1988) Flora of New Zealand. Volume 4.]

Number of species in New Zealand within Medicago L.
Exotic: Fully Naturalised7
Exotic: Casual1
Linnaeus, C. 1753: Species Plantarum. Impensis Laurentii Salvii, Stockholm.
Mabberley, D.J. 2008: Mabberley's plant book, a portable dictionary of plants, their classification and uses. Edition 3. Cambridge University Press.