Tall Melilot Melilotus altissima


Tall Melilot Melilotus altissima

Discovered on local river bank. 8th July 2020. © Peter Hillman

Tall Melilot Melilotus altissima

Discovered on local river bank.
8th July 2020. © Peter Hillman

Tall Melilot Melilotus altissima leaf

Trifoliate leaf, discovered on local river bank.
8th July 2020. © Peter Hillman

Tall Melilot Melilotus altissima

Discovered on local river bank.
8th July 2020. © Peter Hillman

Tall Melilot Melilotus altissima seeds

Black and hairy seedpods, discovered on local river bank.
5th September 2020. © Peter Hillman

Tall Melilot Melilotus altissima

Discovered on local river bank.
8th July 2020. © Peter Hillman

Class Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Order Fabales
Family Fabaceae – Peas & Beans
Species Melilotus altissimus Thuill.


Size Plant height 1.5 m. Flower length 5-7 mm.


Description A medium to tall plant with muliple elongated clusters of bright yellow flowers. The leaves are trifoliate, and the seedpods are hairy, net-veined and black. Very similar to Ribbed Melilot (Melilotus officinalis), which has smaller flowers, for which the keel petal is shorter then the others, and hairless rather than hairy pods.


Flowering season June to August.


Habitat Grasslands, hedgerows, open woodland, roadside verges and river banks.


Status & distribution Common and widespread in England and Wales, scarcer elsewhere. An introduced species.