Rhizomatous subshrub to about 1 m tall with rough or hairy stems. Leaves mostly 10-18 cm long. Leaflets 5-17, elliptic, ovate or oblong, 1.5-4 cm long, 1-2 cm wide, hairless although upper surface with glands. Flowers shorter than the leaves, of numerous white to blue-violet flowers. Fruit pod linear to oblong, to about 3 cm long, 6 mm wide; seeds 2-6.
Rarely cultivated except as a curiosity.
Mediterranean, possibly C Asia. Naturalised in a few localities in N Vic, the Wagga district of NSW, and the northern and southern Mt Lofty Ranges in SA.
Cultivated in the Mediterranean region for the rhizomes, which are the source of liquorice.
Source: (2002). Fabaceae. In: . Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 3. Flowering plants. Dicotyledons. Part 2. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.