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Is this a fern? Help with ID please

Cypress, TX(Zone 9a)

These popped up in my backyard this summer underneath and near my redbud tree where there is no grass. When I first saw them I thought they were Pride of Barbados (I have some nearby), but then I saw that the leaf structure is different. They seem to stay somewhat short; however, I do mow them when I mow the grass, so I'm not sure how tall they would get otherwise. They have the spores under the leaves like a fern.

Thumbnail by hummerseeker
Cypress, TX(Zone 9a)

Closeup of leaf.

Thumbnail by hummerseeker
Cypress, TX(Zone 9a)

Underside of leaf.

Thumbnail by hummerseeker
Cypress, TX(Zone 9a)

Size perspective

Thumbnail by hummerseeker
Danville, IN

I don't think it's a fern. More like some type of vetch, which is a member of the legume family. I'm not familiar with Texas plants though, so hope someone more local will be able to help you.

Northumberland, United Kingdom(Zone 9a)

Certainly a legume, not sure which species though.

Resin

Cypress, TX(Zone 9a)

Wow, thanks so much for the replies. I had no earthly idea where to start looking. I've searched all my native Texas plant books and came up empty. I was afraid it was a non-native that I would have to fight. This one was not in a book that I have. However, after doing some online reading, it is definitely a legume and probably indigenous to the prairies around where I live. I suspect the birds may have brought it in. I rather like it, and it is beginning to make a very nice groundcover where grass won't grow.

Danville, IN

Weeds can be friends, in the right places! Any legume enriches the soil, so this plant might be a "pioneer" weed that replenishes the soil and makes it fertile for new plants to move in someday in the future.

Keaau, HI

It is Phyllanthus debilis. A member of the Euphorbia Family.

Once it gets established, it is very difficult to get rid of. It is very invasive.

Ashdown, AR(Zone 8a)

It's all over my yard and in my flowerebeds...a royal pain and never ending task of weeding out.


Peggy

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