Goat's Rue Galega orientalis

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Oriental goat's rue
Oriental goat's rue
Oriental goat's rue
Oriental goat's rue
Oriental goat's rue
Oriental goat's rue


Galega orientalis, commonly known as East Asian milkvetch, is a perennial plant that is recognized for its striking appearance. The plant typically features an abundance of pinnate leaves, which comprise numerous pairs of small, oblong leaflets. These leaflets are often bright green, offering a lush appearance. Throughout its blooming period, the East Asian milkvetch becomes particularly attractive due to its profusion of delicate flowers. These blossoms are shaped like small tubes that flair into a classic pea-flower shape, and they usually display colors ranging from pale lavender to a soft, bluish-purple, sometimes with white accents making them quite eye-catching. The flowers are clustered together on a long, upright stem, creating an inflorescence that adds a vertical element to its overall form. Beyond its floral display, the plant may also produce narrow, elongated seed pods that hang down from the flowering stems. These pods can provide additional textural and visual interest to the plant as they mature. The overall appearance of the East Asian milkvetch is one of delicate beauty, with an intricate leaf structure and a profusion of whimsical flowers that bring a touch of elegance to any setting in which it grows.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Goat's Rue, East Galega

    • Common names

      Galega persica, Galega bicolor, Galega speciosa, Galega sibirica.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Galega, commonly known as Goat's Rue, contains guanidine derivatives which are toxic to humans. If ingested, they can cause symptoms such as sweating, vomiting, weakness, and respiratory depression. Chronic ingestion can lead to more severe consequences, including organ damage.

    • To pets

      Goat's Rue is also toxic to pets, including cats and dogs. Symptoms of poisoning after ingestion can include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, abdominal pain, and possibly more severe symptoms like difficulty breathing and changes in heart rate. Ingesting Goat's Rue can lead to serious health issues for pets and should be treated promptly by a veterinarian.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2-3 feet (60-90 cm)

    • Spread

      2 feet (60 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Nitrogen Fixation: Galega orientalis, commonly known as Goat's Rue, has the ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen, improving soil fertility.
    • Forage Crop: Goat's Rue can be used as a high-protein forage for livestock, although it must be managed carefully to prevent toxicity.
    • Landscape Beautification: With its attractive flowers, Goat's Rue adds aesthetic value to gardens and landscapes.
    • Pollinator Attraction: The flowers of Goat's Rue are a nectar source for bees and other pollinators, supporting biodiversity.
    • Erosion Control: The plant has a deep rooting system that can help stabilize soil and prevent erosion.
    • Phytoremediation: Goat's Rue has been studied for its potential in phytoremediation, the use of plants to remove contaminants from the environment.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Galactagogue: Galega orientalis has been used traditionally to increase milk production in nursing women.
    • Antidiabetic: There is some evidence that the plant may have effects on lowering blood sugar levels, hence its historical use in treating diabetes.
    • Diuretic: The plant has been used as a diuretic to help with the elimination of excess water from the body.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Galega orientalis, commonly known as East Asian goat's rue, can be utilized as a forage crop, providing a source of feed for livestock due to its rich nutritional content.
    • The plant can be used as green manure, improving soil fertility by fixing nitrogen and adding organic matter when it decomposes.
    • The dense foliage of East Asian goat's rue can provide ground cover, reducing soil erosion and suppressing weed growth in agroforestry systems.
    • Gardeners might use East Asian goat's rue for ornamental purposes, as it produces attractive flowers that can enhance the visual appeal of gardens and landscapes.
    • Because of its rapid growth, East Asian goat's rue can be used for biomass production, contributing to renewable energy resources.
    • The flowers of Galega orientalis can be a source of nectar for bees and other pollinators, supporting biodiversity within the ecosystem.
    • In some regions, it can be used in traditional textile dyeing processes for adding green hues to fabrics, although it's not a common practice.
    • Due to its vigorous growth, East Asian goat's rue might be planted as a pioneer species in reclamation sites to help restore degraded lands.
    • The woody stems of established plants could potentially be harvested and used as a low-grade material for making paper or cardboard.
    • Some artisans might use the dried seed pods of East Asian goat's rue in decorative crafts or as part of floral arrangements.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Galega orientalis, commonly known as goat's rue, is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Galega orientalis, commonly known as goat's rue, is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Hardiness: Galega orientalis, also known as goat's rue, thrives in various conditions demonstrating resilience and the ability to overcome adversity.
    • Adaptability: This plant's capacity to grow in different soil types symbolizes flexibility and the willingness to adapt to diverse environments.
    • Medicinal properties: Historically used for medicinal purposes, goat's rue represents healing and the alleviation of ailments.
    • Purification: Due to its use in traditional medicine to treat various diseases, it can symbolize cleansing and purity.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 1-2 years
Spring to summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Goat's rue requires consistent moisture, especially during its active growing season in spring and summer. Water the plant deeply once a week, ensuring that the soil is moist but not waterlogged. Approximately 1 to 1.5 gallons of water should be sufficient for each watering session, depending on soil type and weather conditions. In hotter, drier periods, you may need to water more frequently, while in cooler, wetter times, you may water less. Always check the top inch of soil for dryness before watering again.

  • sunLight

    Goat's rue thrives in full sun to partial shade. The ideal spot for this plant is in an area where it receives at least 6 hours of sunlight per day, but it can also tolerate some afternoon shade. Avoid deep shade locations, as this will affect the plant's ability to flower.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Goat's rue prefers temperate climates with temperatures ranging between 50°F and 85°F. It can tolerate minimum temperatures down to around 20°F, but frost can damage the plant. The ideal temperature range for this plant to thrive is between 60°F and 75°F.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning goat's rue is important to encourage bushier growth and to prevent it from becoming too leggy. Trim back the plant after flowering to promote a second bloom and to maintain its shape. The best time for pruning is late winter or early spring, just as new growth begins to appear. Generally, pruning once a year is sufficient for maintaining a healthy plant.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Goat's rue thrives best in a well-drained soil mix with a pH ranging from slightly acidic to neutral, around 6.0 to 7.0. A high-quality garden soil amended with compost and possibly perlite or sand to increase drainage is ideal for this plant.

  • plantRepotting

    Goat's rue does not require frequent repotting and can typically be repotted every 2 to 3 years or when it outgrows its current container.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Goat’s rue prefers moderate humidity but is relatively tolerant of various humidity levels as long as proper soil moisture is maintained.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Ensure bright indirect light and sufficient space for Goat's rue growth.

    • Outdoor

      Choose a sunny spot, water well, and protect from strong winds for Goat's rue.

    • Hardiness zone

      4-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Galega orientalis, commonly known as Oriental goat's rue, begins its life as a seed, germinating in favorable soil conditions with ample moisture and light. Upon sprouting, the seedling grows into a herbaceous perennial with tall, erect stems, developing compound leaves with lance-shaped leaflets. Throughout the summer, the plant enters a vegetative growth phase, where it focuses on producing dense foliage and strengthening its root system. Following this period, it enters the reproductive stage, blooming with small, attractive blue to violet flowers typically from June to August, attracting various pollinators. After pollination, the flowers develop into seed pods that mature and eventually release seeds, completing the sexual reproduction cycle. During the winter or unfavorable conditions, the above-ground parts may die back, while the root system remains alive, enabling the plant to regrow and repeat the cycle in the following season.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to summer

    • Propogation: The most popular method of propagation for Galega orientalis, commonly known as Oriental goat's rue, is by seed. Seed sowing should be done in spring after the risk of frost has passed. To initiate propagation, disperse the seeds over a well-draining soil mix and lightly cover them with additional soil. Water the seeds gently to moisten the soil without causing the seeds to wash away. Seedlings will emerge in a few weeks and should be thinned out to prevent overcrowding. For optimal growth ensure they are kept in a sunny location with moderate moisture until they are strong enough to be transplanted into the garden or desired area.