The wild form of Lathyrus odoratus was first described by the Sicilian monk Francicus Cupani in 1696, and introduced into cultivation a few years later when he sent seed to correspondents in Amsterdam and England. The original plant was a bushy climber with modestly sized flowers of intense hue and fragrance. Since then, innumerable cultivated forms have been produced with a great diversity of form and colour, making the sweet pea one of the most popular and widely grown garden flowers and earning it the epithet 'The queen of annuals'.
- name : Lathyrus odoratus L
- chromosome count : 2n = 14
- common names : Sweet pea
- section : Lathyrus
- type : annual herb
- habit : climbing
- distribution : Southern Italy & Sicily
- flowers : maroon standard, violet wings
The wild form of Lathyrus odoratus, sold as "Cupani" or "Cupani Original" is an easily grown bushy climber for a sunny spot in the garden.