Glycine albidiflora De Wild.
Glycine bujacia Benth.
Glycine bujasia Benth.
Glycine claessensii De Wild.
Glycine javanica auct.
Glycine javanica claessensii (De Wild.) Hauman
Glycine javanica longicauda (Schweinf.) Baker
Glycine javanica mearnsii (De Wild.) Hauman
Glycine javanica micrantha (A.Rich.) F.J.Herm.
Glycine javanica pseudojavanica (Taub.) Hauman
Glycine longicauda Schweinf.
Glycine mearnsii De Wild.
Glycine micrantha A.Rich.
Glycine moniliformis A.Rich.
Glycine petitiana (A.Rich.) Schweinf.
Glycine pseudojavanica Taub.
Glycine wightii (Wight & Arn.) Verdc.
Glycine wightii wightii (Wight & Arn.) Verdc.
Johnia petitiana A.Rich.
Johnia wightii (Wight & Arn.) Wight & Arn.
Notonia wightii Wight & Arn.
Shuteria vestita Benth.
Soja javanica (L.) Graham
Soja wightii Graham
Common Name: Perennial Soybean
The plant can escape from cultivation and, as here, form a dense carpet of growth that smothers and kills the native flora
Photograph by: Forest and Kim Starr
Perennial soybean is a herbaceous perennial climbing plant with a strong taproot and trailing, slender, well branched, stems 60 - 450cm long[
]. The stems scramble over the ground, or twine into other plants for support[
The plant is grown as a ground cover and green manure crop for restoring worn out soils.
Tropical Africa from Sierra Leone to Ethiopia, south to Botswana; through Arabia to India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Indonesia.
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Perennial soybean is a native of tropical Africa, where it is found at elevations from sea level up to 2,450 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 20 - 30Â°c, but can tolerate 13 - 32Â°c[
]. Mature plants can be killed by temperatures of -10Â°c or lower, but young growth will be severely damaged at -2Â°c[
]. A survival rate of 50% of the plants has been recorded where temperatures went down to -10Â°c[
]. Normally the plant has limited frost tolerance and leaf damage at 0Â°c occurs in all cultivars[
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 800 - 1,800mm, but tolerates 550 - 4,000mm[
]. It is best adapted to summer rainfall areas[
]. In Kenya, at the equator, it can be grown in the lowlands and up to 2,450 metres in elevation, in Colombia it can be found from sea level to 1,800 metres in elevation[
Performs best in deep, freely drained latosolic soils derived from basic igneous rocks, on self-mulching black soils and fertile alluvial soils. It is not suited to acid podzolic soil or solodic soils. It prefers free-draining loams to clays of basaltic or alluvial origin[
]. It is somewhat tolerant of saline soils[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 6.5 - 7, tolerating 5.7 - 7.5[
]. Established plants are drought tolerant[
Perennial soybean is a vigorous, perennial, twining, leguminous vine that can smother grasses and other low-lying vegetation. It has escaped from cultivation and become a weed in areas outside its native range, and is classified as 'Invasive' in some Pacific Islands[
Dry matter production may be 3.8-4.5 t/ha[
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[
The plant can be used for soil restoration; as a fallow crop in abandoned gardens and as a cover crop and for woody weed control in overgrazed pastures[
Seed - it has a hard seedcoat and may benefit from scarification before sowing to speed up germination. This can usually be done by pouring a small amount of nearly boiling water on the seeds (being careful not to cook them!) and then soaking them for 12 - 24 hours in warm water. By this time they should have imbibed moisture and swollen - if they have not, then carefully make a nick in the seedcoat (being careful not to damage the embryo) and soak for a further 12 hours before sowing.
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