Toxic Parts:
glycosides, nitrocompounds
Flower Color:
  • flower color
waterside, meadows, haybales

Time of Greatest Risk


Geographical Distribution

Birdsville indigo distribution - United States

Related Species

Birdsville Indigo

Indigofera linnaei

9-leaved Indigo
8/ 10
Birdsville Indigo (Indigofera linnaei) is a flat, mat-forming, annual or perennial legume. It has many thin, hairy stems, and alternate pinnate, grey-green, hairy, oval shaped leaflets in two rows. I. linnaei produces tight clusters of pinkish red pea-like flowers followed by groups of cylindrical seed pods. The plant is most abundant in pastures at the start of the summer wet season, when first rains stimulate growth of the plant.

Toxic components
All parts of I. linnaei contain indospicine, a non-proteinogenic amino acid with hepatotoxic properties and beta-nitropropionic acid, a mycotoxin and potent mitochondrial inhibitor. Grazing on pastures containing I. linnaei has been associated with the development of Indigofera toxicity in horses.