The flora of Turkmenistan includes about three thousand species, of which one-third can be found in the Koytendag Mountains – in gorges, on hills, at foothills and along mountain rivers and lakes. Among the plants that complement the local landscape are amazing milkvetches (Astragalus). In different parts of the country, 157 species grow, 63 of them can be found in the mountain zones of the southeast of the country at an altitude of 2,500 metres above sea level; nine species are endemic, for example, Astragalus kelifi, and twenty ones can be attributed to rare plants.
Biologically active substances found in various organs of these leguminous plants are characterised as medicinal, fodder, ornamental, dyeing, or industrial raw material. High in the mountains, milkvetches are rare, they prefer the flat foothills and even the sandy areas of the Karakum Desert; they are well eaten by livestock, therefore some of them are used in fodder production. There is a need for domestication in their natural habitats by additional over-grassing. Livestock breeders appreciate their tallness, productivity, high germination capacity even after secondary mowing, resistance to adverse environmental influences, diseases and pests. A number of milkvetches in some qualities are close to hay grasses, such as Astragalus ispahanicus, A. globiceps, A. schmalhausenii and A. campylotrichus.