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Canada Milkvetch

Astragalus canadensis

Bumblebees are the primary pollinator; foliage is highly palatable to deer, rabbits, livestock & other mammals


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Astragalus canadensis, commonly called Canada milkvetch, is a native perennial legume. It grows to 1.5-3.5 feet tall.

Wildlife notes

The flowers are attractive to hummingbirds, butterflies, and other pollinators. It is a host plant for the western tailed-blue and clouded sulfur butterflies. Primarily bumblebees visit the flowers for nectar. Insects with shorter mouthparts have trouble reaching the nectar. Unlike many milkvetches of the Western states, the foliage of Canada Milkvetch is non-toxic and palatable to mammalian herbivores, including deer, groundhogs, rabbits, and livestock. This plant may be difficult to establish where these animals occur in abundance. The seeds may be eaten occasionally by the Wild Turkey and other upland gamebirds, as well as small rodents, such as the Thirteen-Lined Ground Squirrel.

Forage notes

Unlike many milkvetches of the Western states, the foliage of Canada Milkvetch is non-toxic and palatable to livestock.

Landscaping notes

Best grown in evenly moist, well-draining soils in full sun. Tolerant of drought and a wide range of soil types including dry soils and wet soils as long as they are well-draining. Prairie plantings, native gardens, woodland edges, pollinator gardens. This plant has a tendency to sprawl, unless it receives support from adjacent vegetation.

Restoration notes

Habitats include moist to slightly dry black soil prairies, sand prairies, typical and sandy savannas, thickets and woodland borders, moist meadows near rivers, and abandoned fields.

Additional information

Weight N/A

Packet, Ounce, Pound


Full Sun to Part Shade

Seeding Rate

5 bulk lbs/acre



Bloom Month

Jun, Jul



Specialty Uses

Wildlife, Edible, Medicinal

# seeds/pkt


Packet coverage area

5 sq. ft

What is PLS?

Pure Live Seed (PLS) is the portion of good viable seed per pound. It is a measure of the seed that is alive and able to sprout into plants. This product is sold by PLS ounce/pound. To provide one ounce/pound of viable seed, you will receive more than one ounce/pound of product. Read more about PLS here.