Alternate Names: Rattlebox, Rattlebush, Coffee Bean
Family: (Fabaceae) Pea
Habitat: Wet areas: marshes, ditches, along streams
Height: 15-20 ft.
Bloom Period: June - September
Description: Short-lived shrub. Yellow pea-like flowers. Grows well in full or partial sun. In very hot weather the leaves fold up as a protective measure. The seed pods are four-sided and four-winged. The peas rattle inside, giving this plant the common name of rattlebush. Plants die back to the ground in winter. The seeds are poisonous to cattle.
The Wildlife Connection: Larval food source for the orange sulphur butterfly.