Clover: Spot It & Stop It

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Flowering white clover

Clover is a perennial weed that thrives in moist areas. With shallow roots, this ubiquitous weed can be found across the U.S. Clover excels in nitrogen-depleted soil, making proper lawn nutrition vital to prevent its recurrence.

How to Spot Clover

There are various types of clover. Two of the most common are red clover and white clover. Both are controlled differently, making it essential to properly identify.

  • Red Clover:
    • Also known as purple clover, it’s spotted during cool seasons by its large pinkish-purple flower heads.
    • Each leaf consists of three elliptical leaflets, with a light green or white V-shaped watermark.
  • White Clover:
    • Low-growing, cool-season weed spotted by its white to pink-tinged flower clusters grown from long stems above the leaves.
    • Elliptical leaves arranged in groups of three with distinct light green or white band, like a watermark.

How to Control Clover

Once clover is correctly identified, effective control can be achieved through the following methods:

  • Preemergence herbicides
    Preemergence herbicides enable you to prevent clover before it has a chance to grow. For red clover, GameOn® specialty herbicide delivers fast-acting system control of clover with the active ingredients Arylex® active, as well as 2,4-D choline and fluroxypyr. For white clover, Defendor® specialty herbicide applied in late fall and early spring will effectively and economically prevent and control spring weeds like clover.
  • Follow the label
    Consult the product label for recommended application rates for your area as well as seeding and reseeding rates.
  • Soil control
    If you continuously encounter clover issues, consider soil testing to assess nitrogen levels and take measures to improve soil health for effective clover control.

Spotting problem weeds and properly identifying them is the first step to healthy turf. For more information and treatment options, check out these online resources.

Arylex® is a registered active ingredient. GameOn® is not registered for sale or use in all states. Contact your state pesticide regulatory agency to determine if a product is registered for sale or use in your state. State restrictions on the sale and use of Defendor® apply. Consult the label before purchase or use for full details.  Always read and follow label directions.


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