I’m in clover


I was struck this morning by the difference between my lawn and my neighbor’s. Mine is the green one with all the clover in it, and hers is the brown, chemically-treated wasteland. I believe that I owe the health and resilience of my turf grass to the abundance of clover that I allow to grow in it.

The lawn chemical companies have convinced people that clover is very, very bad indeed and that they should do everything they can to eradicate it. And people believe the lies, dumping all kinds of chemicals – and money – into the effort to keep their lawns clover-free.

The secret that those companies don’t want people to know is that clover is what is known as a “nitrogen fixer”, attracting nitrogen from the air and releasing it into the soil, fertilizing it naturally. So instead of spending money on clover-killers, I let the plants grow and do their fertilizing thing – for free!


“Clover lawns” are enjoying a renaissance these days as part of the movement away from herbicides and pesticides that kill every microorganism in the soil. The plants only bloom for a few weeks, so the rest of the time, they blend right in with the grass.

Another benefit to encouraging clover is the food you provide to bees and other pollinators, who could use all the help they can get. And clover smells good too. So defy convention and allow clover into your lawn. Your grass will thank you.

Happy Independence Day to all my American readers!



About dirtynailz

Writer for a daily newspaper, gardener, tree hugger, orchid-grower, photographer, animal lover, hiker, wilderness seeker. Proponent of clover in the lawn and a dog on the bed.
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15 Responses to I’m in clover

  1. CJ Wright says:

    I love clover, too, dn. I’ve even gotten a new kind from a friend’s yard. The flowers look like yours. I won’t pull it, even from flower pots. Unless they’ve taken over. Even then, I leave some.

    Happy 4th!


  2. Crimson and clover, over and over………………………………..


  3. Great post! And I’m with you. Our lawn is loaded with clover, and I don’t mind one bit. It is wonderful for the environment as a whole. Good for you!


  4. Kathy says:

    I’ve noticed a lot of extra clover in my lawn this year. I love it too; in my opinion, if it’s green, it stays!


    • dirtynailz says:

      I agree! The many who cuts my lawn told me other clients had been bugging him about the “clover problem” this summer. I guess I am one of those outliers who doesn’t see it that way.


  5. Anubis Bard says:

    My father’s lawn was the bane of his neighbors – full of clover, dandelion, violets, and always an inch or two longer than anyone else’s. And also always the greenest and most lush in our brick ranch house suburb. Really he didn’t even like lawns – considered them little better than astroturf, but his thrived with neglect.


    • dirtynailz says:

      What people don’t seem to get is that it’s all about the soil. Leave it alone to do its thing and it’ll support a healthy “composite” lawn.


  6. Kathy says:

    Ah yes, and that lawn next door is WAY too short!


    • dirtynailz says:

      Her lawn guy is very old school. There’s a lot of fertilizer burn, too. I see that on many lawns in our neighborhood.


  7. Diana Studer says:

    my alarm bells are singing – good fences make good neighbours. But not in your neighbourhood. Must be really difficult to live with neighbourly poison wafting across your patch. I have at least the small reassurance of walls, against our poisoning neighbours. If, we had a ‘lawn’ it would be nature’s green mowed high. I haz a sad when I read of wild violets dismissed as weeds.


    • dirtynailz says:

      I know. At least my neighbor doesn’t spray. Her lawn guy applies a granular poison, more or less eliminating drift. My question is, doesn’t she look at her lawn next to mine and see that mine is much greener and wonder why that might be?????


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