Many members of this genus contain toxic glycosides
. All species with edible seedpods can be distinguished by their fleshy round or oval seedpod that looks somewhat like a greengage
. A number of species can also accumulate toxic levels of selenium when grown in soils that are relatively rich in that element
A source of gum tragacanth - used as a thickener in confections
. Some exudes naturally, more can be obtained by incision of the stem about 5cm below ground level
Gum tragacanth is obtained from the stem (see above). It has a wide range of uses including:- a thickening agent in preparing dyes for calico printing, textile dyes and for dressing fabrics, it is also a thickener in making glues, water colours, ink (where it supplies a gloss), it is a binding agent in paper making, a culture medium in laboratories etc
There are no medicinal uses listed for Astragalus creticus.
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame
. A period of cold stratification may help stored seed to germinate
. Stored seed, and perhaps also fresh seed, should be pre-soaked for 24 hours in hot water before sowing - but make sure that you do not cook the seed
. Any seed that does not swell should be carefully pricked with a needle, taking care not to damage the embryo, and re-soaked for a further 24 hours
. Germination can be slow and erratic but is usually within 4 - 9 weeks or more at 13°c if the seed is treated or sown fresh
. As soon as it is large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Astragalus creticus. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus.
Requires a dry well-drained soil in a sunny position.
Plants are intolerant of root disturbance and are best planted in their final positions whilst still small.
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby
. Many members of this genus can be difficult to grow, this may be due partly to a lack of their specific bacterial associations in the soil
Problems, pests & diseases
Associations & Interactions
There are no interactions listed for Astragalus creticus. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.
Polycultures & Guilds
There are no polycultures listed which include Astragalus creticus.
This table shows all the data stored for this plant.
Material uses & Functions
Native Climate Zones
Adapted Climate Zones
Native Geographical Range
Root Zone Tendancy
? 1.01.1 Frohne. D. and Pf?nder. J. A Colour Atlas of Poisonous Plants. Wolfe ISBN 0723408394 (1984-00-00)
? Harrington. H. D. Edible Native Plants of the Rocky Mountains. University of New Mexico Press ISBN 0-8623-0343-9 (1967-00-00)
? 3.03.1 Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books ISBN 3874292169 (1984-00-00)
? 4.04.14.24.3 Howes. F. N. Vegetable Gums and Resins. Faber ()
? 5.05.1 Komarov. V. L. Flora of the USSR. Israel Program for Scientific Translation (1968-00-00)
? 6.06.16.26.188.8.131.52 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
? 7.07.17.2 Rice. G. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 2. Thompson and Morgan. (1988-00-00)
? F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
? ? Flora Europaea Cambridge University Press (1964-00-00)