Lathyrus /ˈlæθɨrəs/ is a genus of flowering plant species known as sweet peas and vetchlings. Lathyrus is in thelegume family, Fabaceae, and contains approximately 160 species. They are native to temperate areas, with a breakdown of 52 species in Europe, 30 species in North America, 78 in Asia, 24 in tropical East Africa, and 24 in temperate South America. There are annual and perennial species which may be climbing or bushy. This genus has numerous sections, including Orobus, which was once a separate genus.
(From Wikipedia, July 2015)