- any of several mostly climbing plants belonging to the genus Vicia, of the legume family, having pinnate leaves ending in tendrils and bearing pealike flowers, especially V. sativa (spring vetch), cultivated for forage and soil improvement.
- any of various allied plants, as Lathyrus sativus, of Europe, cultivated for their edible seeds and for forage.
- the beanlike seed or fruit of any such plant.
Origin of vetch
Examples from the Web for vetch
Summer vetch, although an equally good grower, is killed by freezing.
The hairy or winter vetch lives through the hard freezing winters.
Upon his return to Novgorod he had a dispute with the vetch, and he left the city.The Story of Russia
R. Van Bergen, M.A.
Mr. Vetch declared his ignorance of this, and so they parted.Biographia Scoticana (Scots Worthies)
Every spot was covered with flowers, mostly of the vetch family.The Incomparable 29th and the "River Clyde"
- any of various climbing leguminous plants of the temperate genus Vicia, esp V. sativa, having pinnate leaves, typically blue or purple flowers, and tendrils on the stems
- any of various similar and related plants, such as Lathyrus sativus, cultivated in parts of Europe, and the kidney vetch
- the beanlike fruit of any of these plants
Word Origin and History for vetch
late 14c., from Old North French veche, variant of Old French vece, from Latin vicia, which perhaps is related to vincire "to bind" (cf. second element of periwinkle (n.1)). Dutch wikke, German Wicke are loan-words from Latin vicia.