Garden Tip 106:


Recent rains are doing much to help improve lawns that were decimated by drought and water restrictions this past summer. Last week I over-seeded some bare spots that had truly suffered with white clover seed. For years seed companies and fertilizer companies have tried to convince us that clover is a lawn weed but it can actually benefit the lawn by its presence.

Clover is a legume, in the pea family and these plants have the ability to convert nitrogen in the air to a form that is available in the soil for plants to use. This process is known as nitrogen fixing. Clover is deep rooted, stays green under drought conditions, is quick to grow and fast to spread. It adds diversity to the lawn and is beneficial to honey and native bees as well as to parasitic wasps that prey on other lawn and garden pests.

When over-seeding small areas clover seed can be used directly or mixed with grass seed when large areas are to be treated. So get out this fall or early spring and sow some clover to make for a more durable, sustainable lawn. Remember the words of Willie Nelson, “I’m looking over a four-leaf clover that I overlooked before.”