Choosing The Best Clover For Your Lawn
The types of clover generally used in lawns are strawberry clover, white clover or red clover. These are all perennial clovers, as opposed to annual clover types that complete their life cycles in a single year. Annuals reproduce only from seed, while perennials propagate through both seed and spreading roots. All clovers have deep roots, which helps keep lawns green during dry, hot spells, and they all fix nitrogen, meaning that they work with nitrogen-fixing bacteria to convert nitrogen from the air and transfer it into the soil.
- Strawberry clover: Strawberry clover lawns are popular, and Scotts clover lawn seed mix is based on strawberry clover . The Agriculture and Natural Resources department of the University of California reports that strawberry clover is a more robust plant than white clover, although white clover is more often used in lawns. Strawberry clover is excellent at choking out weeds, therefore helping gardeners avoid spraying herbicides or pesticides. Be aware, however, that it has been bred for cooler climates, according to McKay Grass Seeds, making it less desirable in very hot southern or desert climates. It does, however, tolerate poor, clay soils and is somewhat salt-tolerant.
How Do You Get Clover Seeds
Harvest the clover seeds when the flower is completely dried out. Pinch the stem below the flower and pull your hand up to pull the seeds off the flower stem. Store the clover seeds in a dry, airtight container until you are ready to plant them. Moisture in the storage container can cause the seeds to rot.
Is Clover Easy To Grow
Clover is affordable and easy to grow. A nitrogen-fixing plant, clover brings nutrients to your soil and requires no fertilization. Clover is tolerant of many conditions and outcompetes other weeds. Some of the newer micro-clovers are even more tolerant of shade and can grow in high-traffic areas.
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Converting A Whole Yard To Micro Clover
Some people do kill their lawn and start over, sowing their entire lawn in micro clover.
However, a purely Micro Clover lawn is not that popular for one main reason.
Planting a whole yard with micro clover would be pretty pricey.
A full-blown stand of micro clover will require at least two pounds of seed per 1000 square feet. Ten-pound bags that will cover 5,000 square feet are close to $300.
Sowing the same size area with a premium grass seed will cost about $100 or less, depending on the brand and the store.
So you have to ask yourself if paying three times as much up-front is worth spending less in annual maintenance costs.
Everything You Need To Know About Clover Lawns
- University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
- University of Oklahoma
While it is defined by many as an eco-friendly alternative to lawn grass, people may still consider clover to be a lawn weed. In fact, there are plenty of pesticides and products on the market that will tell you how to get rid of clover.
But there are also a lot of reasons to grow a clover lawn. As we become more conscious of the harmful effects of using pesticides on lawns, we are naturally going to see plants like clover popping up and sticking around. And by keeping your lawn covered with this versatile, low-maintenance plant, you’re actually doing a small part to protect the environment.
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How To Replace Your Lawn With Clover
Clover should be planted in the spring or summer so that it has time to establish itself before cold weather comes.
First, remove all of the grass on your current lawn to eliminate the competition. If you would like, you can leave the current lawn, and seed over top of the grass, but it will take longer for the clover to dominate the yard.
Second, regardless of whether you remove the grass or not, rake or scratch the surface of your yard wherever youd like to grow the clover as a grass substitute.
Third, spread the seed at about 6 to 8 ounces per 1,000 feet . The seeds are very small and may be hard to spread evenly. Do the best you can. The clover will eventually fill in any spots you miss.
Fourth, water deeply after seeding. For the next several weeks, water regularly until your white clover yard has established itself.
Fifth, do not fertilize your white clover lawn. This will kill it.
After this, simply enjoy your low maintenance, white clover lawn.
How To Grow A Clover Lawn
At one time, most yards had at least some white clover growing in them. It was a world before chemicals, and clover was part of seed blends because it improved the soiland the condition of the lawn. Gardeners are returning to recognizing the benefits of clover in lawn grass mixturesor even as a replacement for grass. Learn more.
Move on from the quest for a perfect lawn of just turf grass. Its not natural and ends up requiring chemicals. Before World War II and the advent of chemicals, clover was used as a great companion with turf grass. It was added to seed blends, along with fescues, ryegrasses and Kentucky bluegrass, because it helped grass thrive.
See the incredible benefits of clover below and youll wonder why you dont grow clover!
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Whats The Difference Between Coated And Non
If good bacteria are present in the soil, then there is sufficient nitrogen to give your grass and clover a good start. In this case, you would not need to buy seeds coated with nitrogen.
This is my top recommendation for raw or uncoated micro clover seeds.
Nitrogen-coated seeds are necessary for sterile or otherwise unhealthy soil.
Coated seeds are more expensive, but they are easier to apply and see in your lawn to understand the coverage youre getting when spreading your seed. I feel that laying down a good organic fertilizer with un-coated seed is the best approach, but if youd like to buy pelletized or coated seed, try this one from West Coast Seeds.
What Types Of Grasses Blend Well With Micro Clover In A Lawn
If you live in a more northern region, then your lawn is most likely Kentucky Bluegrass. This kind of grass is perfect for including micro clover.
Other grasses that pair well with micro clover and create a gorgeous lawn are Dwarf Perennial Ryegrass and several types of Fescue grasses, such as Dwarf Fescue varieties, Fine Fescues, and even Tall Fescue.
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Where To Buy Bulk Clover Seeds
May 30th, 2014 4:48 pm
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May 30th, 2014 5:04 pm
May 30th, 2014 5:41 pm
May 30th, 2014 9:53 pm
May 30th, 2014 10:55 pm
May 30th, 2014 11:12 pm
May 30th, 2014 11:49 pm
Dekster wrote: âThey also have 1kg packages. 1kg covers 1 acre or more. Those are the ones I got this spring and planted 3 weeks ago, they are already growing. Most work is of course to remove the grass first…
What was your technique for removing the grass?,
May 31st, 2014 10:29 am
May 31st, 2014 1:17 pm
May 31st, 2014 8:22 pm
Dekster wrote: âI tilled the area, let is dry out for a week, tilled again, then covered with some soil to even it out, planted clover and covered with another thin layer of soil. Some weeds are still sticking out there, but not more than what I had when there was grass, I hope with time clover will “defeat” the most weeds.
Do Grubs Eat Clover Roots
White grubs cant stand red or white clover. Whats more, clover fixes nitrogen and helps bluegrass turf withstand dry conditions. If the soil is rich and well-balanced, clover wont take over your lawn. The deeper and healthier the lawns roots, the better it can resist dry conditions and white grub infestations.
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You Couldnt Find A Lawn Seed Mix Without It
Other experts on the subject have similar things to say. According to Jeff Lowenfels author of influential gardening guides Teaming With Microbes and Teaming With Fungi through his 40 years as a gardening columnist for the Anchorage Daily News, clover was in fact considered so essential for lawns back in the day that it was a standard, even necessary, component in lawn seed mixes. Says Lowenfels, You couldnt find a lawn seed mix without it!
Turns out clover does some of the weeding for you, too. As a dense ground cover plant, clovers though they are also broad-leaved are exceptional at crowding out other broadleaf plants such as dandelions, violets, and other plants that commonly populate lawns.
Clover crowds out broadleaf weeds because it quickly forms clumps that spread by secondary roots, or stolons, says Sharapova. In agriculture too, clovers are common and successful cover crops according to studies like this one in 2015. When sown in between major crop plantings, they keep weeds down on farm fields for the upcoming year. This helps cut down on herbicide use and costs, too.
And though you maybe wouldnt expect them to be, clovers are kind to grasses. Even today, youll see many lawns and fields where clovers and grass coexist peacefully, side-by-side and grasses even return some favors to clovers, especially when it comes to a lush and beautiful lawn.
What Kind Of Clover Is Best For Lawns
At the sight of a clover in an otherwise pristine grass lawn, zealous homeowners used to grab a spade or the weed-n-feed, and excise the poor plant. Now, however, savvy gardeners know that clover can enhance a home lawn and has uses far beyond providing good grazing pasture land for animals. The primary clovers used in lawns are strawberry, white and red, most of which grow in USDA hardiness zones 3 to 10.
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Clover Is Easy And Affordable To Grow From Seed
It’s easy to add clover to your lawn, to take advantage of its many useful attributes. It’s especially helpful for filling in bare patches of lawn or areas where it’s difficult to grow grass.
Sow in spring after the threat of frost has passed or in autumn, depending on plant species and your location.
Seed can be sown directly over established turf grasses. Mow your grass at a low setting and gently raking out any built-up thatch. Then mix seed with sand, sawdust, fine compost, or soil, to make even distribution easier. Broadcast seeds over the planting area. After sowing, water the planting site deeply, and keep the soil surface moist until the clover germinates .
If Youre Trying To Improve Your Soil Or Looking For A Hardy Easy To Grow Groundcover Look No Further
Clover is the answer! Clovers can provide numerous benefits to your soil and garden. Clovers are a natural fertilizer, eliminating the need to have to use store bought products. Its cheaper to seed and they provide natural fertilizer to your soil. Clovers are hardy and are great options for areas that might be too shady or poorly drained. Another major benefit of planting Clover is attracting pollinators to your garden. The birds and the bees love clover and we know how beneficial they are to our ecosystem!
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Seed Barn Clover Seeds
With more than 100 varieties of clover seeds available here at Seed Ranch, your choices seem almost endless. Micro clover seed, not sold as a straight variety but only mixed in with your choice of grass seed . This combination produces dark green, low-maintenance, healthy lawns resistant to both drought and disease.
Crimson Clover Seed is a beautiful, colorful annual forage plant with bright red flowers often seeded into warm-weather pastures containing perennial grasses. White Dutch Clover can be bought either raw or nitro-coated and inoculated and is favored for use in lawn seed mixtures because it grows fast and dependable. Alyce Clover Seed is a good choice for attracting wildlife and contains approximately 15% protein. Ball Clover Seed is excellent for attracting honeybees!
Why Does My Lawn Have Clover
Traditional clover otherwise known as White Clover or Dutch clover in your lawn could be a signal that your grass is starving.
Grass needs nitrogen but must obtain that nutrient from the soil. Nitrogen from rainwater and granular fertilizer penetrates the soil and feeds your grass.
Clover, on the other hand, is a legume and it absorbs nitrogen from the air.
It can therefore thrive even if the soil is nitrogen deficient. If clover arrives in your lawn without an invitation, your lawns grass is probably ailing and you need to support your yards soil by top-dressing it with compost, and/or spreading organic fertilizer.
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What Is Micro Clover
Micro clover is a smaller variety of White Clover. It has tiny leaves and fewer white flowers. Being smaller, micro clover grows lower to the ground and does not have the clumping tendency of its larger relative.
All clover is considered a legume capable of turning atmospheric nitrogen gas into an organic form of nitrogen.
The natural fertilizer clover produces is capable of feeding other surrounding plants, like grass.
This health benefit is one of the main reasons people are adding micro clover to their lawns.
Why Would I Choose To Include Micro Clover In My Lawn
As I mentioned above, micro clover is capable of producing its own nitrogen. This nitrogen can enrich the surrounding soil and improve grass growth naturally.
Naturally-produced nitrogen from clover and other legumes in your yard limits the need to apply fertilizer. This will cut down on your annual lawn maintenance costs, but there are other benefits to clover as well.
We all know that chemical fertilizers can run off during a heavy rain and end up in local water sources. Keeping dangerous chemicals out of our fresh water streams and lakes is an important task. If having micro clover as part of your lawn helps achieve this objective, then its worth considering for many environmentally conscious homeowners.
Micro clover is also a low maintenance lawn filler that adds dimension to a lawn. When mixed with the right grass seed, micro clover can fill gaps, enhance the green hue of your yard, and create unique and inviting texture in your lawn.
The hardy nature of micro clover also limits the growth of weeds. It spreads out to fill holes in your turfgrass and creates a dense canopy which prevents weeds from germinating.
This can help keep your lawn healthy and beautiful.
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Usda Hardiness Planting Zones
To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures the lower the zone number the colder the winter.
- If the coldest winter temperature expected in your area is -15°F then any plants rated zones 3-5 will survive the winter temperatures in your area.
- If you live in very warm winter areas plants with zones 3-4 ratings are not recommended. The lack of freezing winter temperatures do not provide a time for winter dormancy .
Transitioning To A Partial Micro Clover Yard
Micro clover probably works best when overseeded into an existing lawn. The lush green hues and added texture will make your lawn both beautiful and comfortable to walk on barefoot.
But another great reason to seed micro clover into your grass is to make your existing lawn healthier.
The nitrogen micro clover produces is a huge benefit for your turf. Also, the hearty clover keeps other weeds from creeping in.
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Seeding Rate Depth Time
Seeding Rate:Seeding rates vary with geographic location, seeding method, and seeding mixture. In general, rates 1/4 – 1/2 lb per 1000 square feet or 8 to 10 lbs per acre are recommended.Seeding Depth:The ideal seeding depth for clover seeds is approximately 1/4-inch maximum.Seeding Time:In the Southern USA, white clover is seeded in late winter or early spring and in late summer. In the Northern USA, most white dutch clover is seeded in early spring or late summer.
White dutch clover can be seeded by many no-till or minimum till techniques and by broadcast seeding. In conventional seedbeds, white clover is almost always seeded with a perennial grass for lawns or hard or sheeps fescue for erosion control. Just scatter the seeds, rake lightly, and keep the clover seeds moist until it sprouts! After sprouting occurs, cut back watering as root development starts taking place and less water is needed. Withstands mild drought, grows well all over the U.S., even on barren soil where nothing else wants to grow. Winter hardy and it stays so low you can just till it under in spring if you are using it for a cover crop.