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(Lathyrus maritimus, sometimes L. japonicus), sprawling perennial plant in the pea family (Fabaceae). It occurs on gravelly and sandy coastal areas throughout the North Temperate Zone. The stem is 30-60 centimetres (1-2 feet) long. The alternate leaves are divided into 6 to 12 leaflets arranged along the leafstalk. The purplish-blue flowers, which appear throughout the summer, are followed by a hairy pod about 3 cm long.