Why Do I Have So Much Clover in My Lawn and How to Get Rid of Clover

Clover can be a real problem when it invades lawns, gardens and other grassy areas. Clover is the common name for plants in the genus Trifolium, which includes wild clover (Trifolium pratense) and white Dutch clover (Trifolium repens). The plant has three leaves growing out of one point at the top of each stem. Instead of blooming with flowers like most other plants, it produces tiny red or pinkish-red flower buds that get eaten by birds before they open.

Photo from @yotsuba_clover1

Why does clover take over the lawn?

Clover gradually begins to take over the lawn when it is not properly cared for. If you don’t water it properly, cut the grass, and give it proper care, clover will quickly take over and you’ll have a hard time getting rid of it.

Features of clover

Clover is a perennial plant that can live from two to five years. It has small, tufted leaves and flowers from late spring to early fall. The flowers are pollinated by bees and other insects. Clover reproduces by seeds, which are spread by wind and water. Clover multiplies very quickly and grows quickly, which is why it is so difficult to control.

Features of clover
Photo from @michelle_mace_

But on the other hand, clover has its advantages. Instead of removing it, you can leave the clover, as it looks beautiful and will make your lawn look more lush. Plus, clover gets nitrogen from the air, which it then saturates the soil with. Clover’s special symbiotic relationship with bacteria makes it a natural source of fertilizer.

But it is worth remembering that clover attracts rabbits, which are very fond of eating this kind of plant.

How to get rid of clover

If you decide you want to get rid of clover, there are several ways to do it. You can try one of the following ways to get rid of clover from your lawn.

With nitrogen

With nitrogen
Photo from @mahiroo_428

The best way to get rid of clover is to use nitrogen. Clover cannot survive in soil high in nitrogen. You can either apply a chemical fertilizer high in nitrogen or add manure to the lawn, which also contains nitrogen. However, the disadvantage of this method is that it can damage the grass.

Removal by hand

If you don’t want to use chemicals or fertilizers, the best way to get rid of clover is to remove it by hand. You can remove clover by hand and with a hoe. However, this can be quite time consuming, depending on how much clover is on your lawn. Just remember to remove the clover from the soil along with the roots. If you leave the roots in the soil, it will grow back.

Corn gluten

Corn gluten
Photo from @cecicela_

Another way to get rid of clover is to use corn gluten. Corn gluten is a pre-emergent herbicide that prevents seed germination. It can be purchased at most garden stores. However, this method will not work on clover that has already grown, because it will only slow the germination of the seeds and stop them from growing at all. Also, cornmeal will not harm the grass that has already grown, but it will damage the recently sown lawn.

Herbicides

Finally, to get rid of clover, you can use herbicides. There are many different kinds of herbicides, but be sure to read the label and follow the instructions carefully. Always wear protective clothing when using herbicides. Herbicides kill all plants they come in contact with, so be very careful not to spray them on any plants. It is important to spot treat clover with this type of product to avoid getting it on other grasses.

Grass clippings

Grass clippings
Photo from @lir.lzr

Another way to get rid of clover is by putting grass clippings on your lawn. This will reduce the amount of nitrogen in the soil, which will make it harder for the clover to grow. Be sure not to use too many or you’ll suffocate other plants and grasses.

Proper watering

Proper watering is another way to get rid of clover. Clover will die if the soil becomes too dry, so make sure you water your lawn regularly. If you take care of your grass and keep it healthy, clover will have no place in your yard! But it’s important not to let the soil get too dry here, too, because other plants in your lawn can get hurt.

Selective killers

Finally, selective products can be used to kill clover. These products are specifically designed to kill different types of plants and weeds, so they will only affect the clover in your lawn without damaging the grass around it. Take care not to spray herbicides on windy days or when there is a lot of moisture in the air, because this will make them less effective. It will not harm the grass, children playing on the lawn, or pets. It is also effective against bogweed, dandelion, and yellow mustard.

Sowing “bare” areas

One way to prevent clover from coming back is to sow an area with “bare” soil. Clover cannot grow without sunlight, so this will help prevent it from re-growing in that area. You can remove clover by hand or use a hoe to get rid of it before you sow the ground. Just make sure that the clover is definitely removed from the soil along with the roots. Then reseed the bare areas with whatever grass you want.

Depriving clover of oxygen

Depriving clover of oxygen
Photo from @dreamtraveler247

Another way to get rid of clover is deprive it of oxygen. Clover needs light and oxygen to grow, so if you can’t see it or if it’s covered with something like mulch, the clover will die. This is a slow process, but eventually the clover will die and not come back.

Vinegar solution

Another way to get rid of clover is to use a vinegar solution. This method is non-toxic and environmentally friendly. Mix white vinegar with water at a ratio of one part vinegar to nine parts water. This mixture can either be poured over the clover or sprayed from a garden hose. However, you will have to reapply it for several weeks.

Nicolas Wayne

Gardening and lawn care enthusiast

Nicolaslawn
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