a plant, Medicago sativa, of the legume family, usually having bluish-purple flowers, originating in the Near East and widely cultivated as a forage crop.
Contemporary Examples

A small flowering plant in the pea family, Fabaceae, known as alfalfa.
Obama’s Organic Game Eve Conant October 14, 2011

The alfalfa Club dinner crowd in tiaras was the order of the night.
Staking Out Kissinger’s 90th-Birthday Party Nina Strochlic June 3, 2013

They grew up as crop and dairy farmers in Iowa, tending corn, soy, alfalfa, hay, oats and clover.
An American Prairie Feast Sophie Menin July 16, 2010

To wit, Parvin has been a member of the alfalfa Club for 26 years.
How Funny Is Obama? Sandra McElwaine January 29, 2009

They will concentrate instead on farming their 1,900 acres of alfalfa, 1,600 acres of corn, and 1,400 acres of soybeans.
Iowa Straw Poll Drawing Yawns Lauren Ashburn August 8, 2011

Historical Examples

The most valuable in providing hay are the medium red, alfalfa and alsike.
Clovers and How to Grow Them Thomas Shaw

And near them long trains of burros laden with grain, alfalfa, straw, or wood.
Aztec Land Maturin M. Ballou

I’ve got a ten-acre orange grove now and two hundred acres of alfalfa and a foreman who lets me gad!
Still Jim Honor Willsie Morrow

The Dean could have been enticed away to examine the alfalfa and the pumping system.
The Forbidden Trail Honor Willsie

We have our grub box filled, and our oil can; also grain for the horses and some alfalfa hay.
The Cruise of a Schooner Albert W. Harris

a leguminous plant, Medicago sativa, of Europe and Asia, having compound leaves with three leaflets and clusters of small purplish flowers. It is widely cultivated for forage and as a nitrogen fixer and used as a commercial source of chlorophyll Also called lucerne

1845, from Spanish alfalfa, earlier alfalfez, from Arabic al-fisfisa “fresh fodder.”


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