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a genus of perennial plants of the family Leguminosae. They are often stemless herbs, subshrubs, and thorny, usually pulvinate shrubs. The alternate leaves are oddly compound pinnate. The yellow, pink, and white flowers are in axillary racemose inflorescences. The calyx is tubular, with almost even teeth and a pointed keel at the apex. The fruit is a bean.
There are about 400 species of Oxytropis, distributed in the cold, temperate, and subtropical zones of the northern hemisphere, primarily in the mountains of Middle, Southwest, and Central Asia. More than 300 species are found in the USSR, growing mainly in mountain meadows and steppes, on rocky slopes, and in arctic and mountain tundras. In high-mountain regions and the tundra the plants serve as fodder. O. ochroleuca, O. sulphurea, and several other species are cultivated as ornamentals.