A legume (/ˈlɛɡjuːm, ləˈɡjuːm/) is a plant in the family Fabaceae (or Leguminosae), or the seed of such a plant (also called pulse). Legumes are grown agriculturally, primarily for human consumption, for livestock forage and silage, and as soil-enhancing green manure. Well-known legumes include alfalfa, clover, peas, chickpeas, lentils, lupin bean, mesquite, carob, soybeans, peanuts and tamarind.
A legume fruit is a simple dry fruit that develops from a simple carpel and usually dehisces (opens along a seam) on two sides. A common name for this type of fruit is a pod, although the term "pod" is also applied to a number of other fruit types, such as that of vanilla (a capsule) and of the radish (a silique).
Legumes are notable in that most of them have symbiotic nitrogen-fixing bacteria in structures called root nodules. For that reason, they play a key role in crop rotation.