Lathyrus tingitanus, The Tangier Pea

 

Introduction

A vigourous climbing annual with showy pink or purple flowers native to south western Europe and North Africa. It has become naturalised in other parts of the world, including New Zealand and the north western USA.

Lathyrus tingitanus flower Lathyrus tingitanus roseus
Lathyrus tingitanus L. tingitanus roseus

 

Lathyrus tingitanus legume
Lathyrus tingitanus legume

Summary

Cultivation

A rather rampant species with good sized flowers which needs to be deadheaded regularly to prolong the flowering season. Unlike some Lathyrus species, seed of Lathyrus tingitanus germinates readily without special treatment when sown in the spring. The young plants should be planted out in a warm situation in full sun where they are to flower. The winged stems carry narrow leaves and climb by means of tendrils. The flowers are quite distinctive with a very large standard petal, and small wings which wrap around the keel. The type species has flowers of a rich magenta purple, while Lathyrus tingitanus roseus has flowers of a softer pink with a dark flare up the centre of the standard. Seed of Lathyrus tingitanus is available from Owl's Acre Sweet Peas.