Astragalus filipes (Basalt milkvetch)

Drought tolerant, long-lived perennial native legume with showy pale-yellow to creamy white flowers, blooming April to July. Widely distributed and abundant on western arid and semiarid sagebrush steppe and open woodland ecosystems, from northern Mexico to southern Canada, often occurring in large colonies; up to 9,000 ft. elevation. Prefers coarse to semicoarse soils, commonly basalt derived. Some ability to develop new shoots from lateral roots. Good colonizer after fire and competes well with cheatgrass. Use for revegetation, reclamation and habitat restoration on sites with increased fire frequency. Nontoxic to livestock and wildlife. Provides food for sage-grouse during the brood-rearing stage. Excellent pollen and nectar source for pollinators, including numerous species of native bees. Varieties listed below.


Astragalus filipies (Basalt milkvetch) map.png


Family: Fabaceae

Duration: Perennial

Growth Habit: Forb

Native Status: Native

Growth Form: Single crown

Mature Height: 12-40 in.

Bloom Color: White to pale yellow

Bloom Period: Late Spring

Annual Precipitation: 10+ in.

Drought Tolerance: High

Shade Tolerance: Intolerant


Wetland Indicator Status:

Fire Resistance: No

Fire Tolerance:

Nitrogen fixation:


Coarse Texture: Yes

Medium Texture: Yes

Fine Texture: No

Salinity Tolerance: Low

CaCO3 Tolerance: Medium

pH Range: 5.8-7.3


Seeds per Pound: 120,000

Seeding Rate:  PLS lbs/acre

Season: Fall/Spring

Days to Germination:


Dry River - Source Identified selection from Deschutes County, OR averaging 9-12 in. annual precipitation.

NBR-1 - Use for fire rehabilitation, restoration and wildlife and pollinator habitat enhancement. (Released 2008)