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Trifolium repens (White clover)

Beginner
skill rating
1 hour care
per year
0.15m
Max height
0.45m
Max spread
2-5 years
To maturity

Plant details

Botanical name

Trifolium repens

Other names

White clover, Common clover, Clover grass, Creeping clover, Dutch clover, Gowan , Honey stalks, Honeysuckle grass, Lamb's suckling, Shamrock, Sheep's gowan

Genus

Trifolium Trifolium

Species

T. repens - T. repens is a vigorous, mat-forming, rhizomatous perennial bearing palmate leaves divided into three oval, sometimes marked, mid-green leaflets. Dense, rounded racemes of small, pea-like, sometimes pink-flushed, white flowers bloom in late spring and throughout summer.


Trifolium repens is: Deciduous

Habit

Mat Forming, Spreading

Flower

White in Spring; White in Summer

Foliage

Green in Spring; Green in Summer; Green in Autumn

How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest free.

Diseases

Generally disease free.

General care

Pruning

Cut back hard in summer if foliage gets untidy. If grown as a green manure, chop the leaves back and leave to wilt. Two weeks prior to planting, dig the wilted plants into the top 25cm of soil.

Propagation

To grow as a green manure, sow seeds in late summer or autumn in rows or broadcast across the soil. Rake into the surface.

Propagation methods

Division, Seed


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Where to grow

Trifolium repens (White clover) will reach a height of 0.15m and a spread of 0.45m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Low Maintenance, Lawn, Ground Cover, Garden edging, Cottage/Informal, Bees (attract & feed bees), Wildflower

Cultivation

Grow in moist but well-drained, preferably neutral soil in sun. Suitable for use as a green manure, a forage plant, a bee attractant, or added to lawn seed mixes for areas where grass does not grow well alone.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained, Well-drained

Soil pH

Neutral

Light

Partial Shade, Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

Companion plants

We do not currently have companion plants added for this plant.

Botanical name

Trifolium repens

Other names

White clover, Common clover, Clover grass, Creeping clover, Dutch clover, Gowan , Honey stalks, Honeysuckle grass, Lamb's suckling, Shamrock, Sheep's gowan

Genus

Trifolium Trifolium

Species

T. repens - T. repens is a vigorous, mat-forming, rhizomatous perennial bearing palmate leaves divided into three oval, sometimes marked, mid-green leaflets. Dense, rounded racemes of small, pea-like, sometimes pink-flushed, white flowers bloom in late spring and throughout summer.

Foliage

Deciduous

Habit

Mat Forming, Spreading


Colour

Flower

White in Spring; White in Summer

Foliage

Green in Spring; Green in Summer; Green in Autumn


How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest free.

Diseases

Generally disease free.

General care

Pruning

Cut back hard in summer if foliage gets untidy. If grown as a green manure, chop the leaves back and leave to wilt. Two weeks prior to planting, dig the wilted plants into the top 25cm of soil.

Propagation

To grow as a green manure, sow seeds in late summer or autumn in rows or broadcast across the soil. Rake into the surface.

Propagation methods

Division, Seed


Monthly care advice


Where to grow

Trifolium repens (White clover) will reach a height of 0.15m and a spread of 0.45m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Low Maintenance, Lawn, Ground Cover, Garden edging, Cottage/Informal, Bees (attract & feed bees), Wildflower

Cultivation

Grow in moist but well-drained, preferably neutral soil in sun. Suitable for use as a green manure, a forage plant, a bee attractant, or added to lawn seed mixes for areas where grass does not grow well alone.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained, Well-drained

Soil pH

Neutral

Light

Partial Shade, Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

USDA zones

Zone 10, Zone 9, Zone 8, Zone 7, Zone 6, Zone 5, Zone 4, Zone 3

Defra's Risk register #1

Plant name

Trifolium repens (White clover)

Common pest name

Apple root knot nematode

Scientific pest name

Meloidogyne mali

Type

Nematode

Current status in UK

Unknown

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

3

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

UK (along with certain other European countries) received potentially infested trees in 1992; but these were destroyed at the end of the trial period and targeted surveillance has failed to find any trace of the nematode. Main impacts are on elm; apple and mulberry and industry should source such material carefully.

Defra's Risk register #2

Plant name

Trifolium repens (White clover)

Common pest name

Scientific pest name

Wiseana despecta

Type

Insect

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

1

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

New Zealand pest mainly affecting pasture. Main pathway (potatoes) already prohibited and little likelihood of introduction by other means.

Defra's Risk register #3

Plant name

Trifolium repens (White clover)

Common pest name

Scientific pest name

Wiseana cervinata

Type

Insect

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

1

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

New Zealand pest mainly affecting pasture. Main pathway (potatoes) already prohibited and little likelihood of introduction by other means.

About this section

Our plants are under greater threat than ever before. There is increasing movement of plants and other material traded from an increasing variety of sources. This increases the chances of exotic pests arriving with imported goods and travellers, as well as by natural means. Shoot is working with Defra to help members to do their part in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive risks.

Traveling or importing plants? Please read "Don't risk it" advice here

Suspected outbreak? Click here for contact details to report to the relevant authority.

Date updated: 7th March 2019 For more information visit: https://planthealthportal.defra.gov.uk/

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This plant likes... Garden match
Soil types: Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types) Tell us...
Soil drainage: Moist but well-drained, Well-drained Tell us...
Soil pH: Neutral Tell us...
Light: Partial Shade, Full Sun Tell us...
Aspect: South, East, West Tell us...
Exposure: Sheltered Tell us...
Hardiness: Hardy (H4) Tell us...

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