CPC Plant Profile: Sandhills Milkvetch
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Plant Profile

Sandhills Milkvetch (Astragalus michauxii)

Photo Credit: M. Kunz
  • Global Rank: G3 - Vulnerable
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Fabaceae
  • State: AL, FL, GA, NC, SC
  • Nature Serve ID: 159221
  • Date Inducted in National Collection:

Astragalus michauxii is an herbaceous, long-lived perennial producing one to several erect stems to 1 m (3.3 ft) in height,  flowering in axillary racemes from April – June, and fruiting as dehiscent pods June – October.  In the most recent taxonomic treatment, Barneby (1964) places A. michauxii as the sole species in a phalanx, noting the differences from other southeastern species of Astragalus.

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Taxon Astragalus michauxii
Authority (Kuntze) F.J. Herm.
Family Fabaceae
CPC Number 8626
ITIS 25577
Common Names Sandhills Milk-vetch | sandhill's milk-vetch | sandhills milkvetch
Associated Scientific Names Astragalus michauxii | Tium michauxii | Astragalus apilosus | Astragalus glaber | Tium apilosum | Tragacantha michauxii
Distribution Astragalus michauxii is endemic to the Fall-line Sandhills of North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia (Sorrie and Weakley 2001) with most remaining populations having fewer than 20 individuals (Wall et al. 2012).  There are approximately 46 populations remaining in NC and only 3 in SC.  In GA,  of 22 documented populations in only 8 remain with 4 on protected land (Chafin 2007).
State Rank
State State Rank
Alabama S1
Florida SNR
Georgia S2
North Carolina S3
South Carolina S3

A. michauxii are found in the pine/scrub oak sandhill and xeric sandhill scrub communities of the longleaf pine ecosystem, part of the greater Coastal Plain physiographic province (Sorrie et al. 2006).  These habitats are primarily maintained by fire, with return intervals approximately every 3 years.

Ecological Relationships

Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID
Lead Institution State Reintroduction Type Year of First Outplanting
North Carolina Botanical Garden and US Army Corps of Engineers CERL North Carolina Reintroduction 2012

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