White clover, which belongs to the legume family, happens to be a perennial weed that is typically found in the US. It has a close relationship with agricultural crops, namely, sweet clover, and alfalfa. It will be feasible for clover to survive in under-nourished lawns since it has the ability to produce its own nitrogen. While some folks prefer clovers growing on their lawns, others like to get rid of clovers since they are of the notion that clovers appear to be rather messy. Moreover, they are concerned about the fact that the kids might be stung by the honeybees visiting the flowers.
How is it possible to identify clovers on the lawn?
In case you come across small and round, pink or white flowers in the lawn and bees are buzzing around these flowers, then it is possible that your lawn has got clover. The real fact is that the majority of the lawns do have clover. This perennial weed comes in lots of varieties, and the most common among them is the white clover.
Let us find out how to get rid of clovers from your lawn for good.
1. Pull out manually
If there are small patches of clover in the lawn, then it will be a sensible idea to rip them out from the soil manually. Make sure to loosen the soil with the help of a spade. Following this, pull the clovers out while removing the roots as well. This is because there is a possibility for the clovers to come back to your yard if any roots still remain in the garden. You can apply this method to kill the clover while maintaining the safety of the surrounding grass.
2. Don’t expose the clover to sunlight
Another way to get rid of clovers will be to deprive them of sunlight. In case there is a large patch of clover in the lawn and you don’t mind losing some of the grass, it will be a sensible idea to place a large garbage bag or plastic sheeting over the clover. However, make sure that the plastic does not fly off by securing the perimeter. Make it a point to cover the clover for several weeks so that it does not get sunlight or oxygen.
3. Make use of corn gluten meal
It is a fact that corn gluten meal consists of organic compounds known as dipeptides that have the ability to interact with clover negatively thus killing the plants while they become mature. However, they will be able to do this without harming the rest of the grass in the garden. Make certain to use approximately 20 lbs. of corn gluten meal every 1,000 sq. ft. throughout the lawn. Following this, the ground has to be watered properly such that it will be possible for the moisture to penetrate the soil for performing its work.
4. Properly feed the garden bed
Make it a point to take proper care of the lawn as a whole to make certain that it is not feasible for broadleaf weeds like clover to take over the yard. Provide the soil with lots of light, organic fertilizer, and water which will assist in preventing the development of clover before it becomes a nuisance.
5. Use fertilizer packed with nitrogen
On most occasions, your lawn might become damaged due to a lack of nitrogen which will encourage the development of clover. Consequently, you will be able to get rid of clover by the application of fertilizers. The fertilizer should be chosen depending on the condition of the clover present in the yard. It would be a good idea to go for an organic fertilizer if only small spaces in the lawn are covered with clover. Otherwise, make use of a quick-release fertilizer to destroy the weed instantly. The fertilizer has to be sprayed on the clover directly once every month, preferably during the spring or you might stick to the instructions on the label of the product. Here, we like to mention that clover has the ability to produce nitrogen naturally such that you might use it in the lawn as a fertilizer after getting rid of it.
If you are planning to get rid of clovers, then you can take the help of herbicides as well. Make it a point to take the help of an experienced lawn treatment professional before choosing the most effective and safest herbicide.
The herbicide has to be applied to the clover directly making certain that it doesn’t affect the other vegetation in the yard. Here, it is essential to bear in mind that it might not be possible for the herbicide to destroy the roots of mature clovers such that there is a possibility for the clover to grow back. While using this type of herbicide, make sure to do it on a warm windless, and cloudless day. This type of climate will be suitable for the herbicide to provide you with better outcomes.
7. Vinegar mixture
One of the natural ways to get rid of clover will be to prepare a vinegar-based mixture. Even though this process might need you to perform the spraying at regular intervals for a couple of weeks it happens to be an eco-friendly option unlike the other methods such as the use of chemical-based sprays and herbicides.
The ingredients needed for preparing the mixture will be 1 cup of water, 1 cup of vinegar, a spray bottle, and 1 drop of dish soap.
- Shake properly after combining the water, vinegar, and dish soap within the spray bottle.
- Spray the patches after locating the clover, and while doing so, take care to protect the surrounding grass from the vinegar solution.
- The mixture has to be sprayed for approximately 2 weeks at regular intervals. The clover leaves will become dry after the application of the vinegar over time, and the plant will die eventually. The presence of dish soap will allow the mix to stick to the plant properly.
- After waiting for several weeks, make sure to reseed using grass seed.
8. Adjust the mowing height
It is a fact that clovers prefer growing in regions where the height of the grass is less than 3 inches. Make sure to set the mower to more than 3 inches so that the grass will be able to grow out somewhat, thus preventing the development and spreading of the clover in the long run. In case the lawn is mowed at a higher setting, it will be possible for the grass to outcompete the clover in terms of growth.
9. Reseed the lawn following the removal of the clover
It will be possible to control the germination of the clover seeds in the future by planting grass seeds immediately after getting rid of the clover. Make sure to encourage the development of grass by adding a layer of fertilizer and mulch. It will be almost impossible for the clover to grow if there is enough coverage of grass in the lawn.
10. Nitrogen boost
Clover prefers to grow in soil where the level of nitrogen is low. Therefore, one surefire way to discourage the growth of clovers will be to apply fertilizer rich in the content of nitrogen to the patches of clover. If there is a lot of clover in the lawn that you are planning to get rid of, then a cost-effective and fast option will be to make use of a fast-release fertilizer. Otherwise, organic fertilizer can also be used such as the following:
- Liquid kelp
- Cow manure
- Blood meal
- Earthworm castings
- Bone meal
Although organic fertilizer will be better for the surroundings, it will not be effective in getting rid of clovers fast. The quality of the soil in the yard will be reduced to a great extent while applying fast-release fertilizer. There is no need to cover the entire lawn, and you can apply the stuff only to those areas where there is a growth of clover. It will be possible to get hold of organic fertilizers and fast-release fertilizers at the majority of the home-improvement and garden stores in your locality.
11. Adequate watering
It will be feasible to prevent the development of clovers in the lawn by watering the lawn a couple of times every week. Weeds will not be able to grow in the garden when the lawn is packed with the required nutrients. Make sure that the lawn does not become deprived of the essential nutrients and water since it won’t be capable of protecting itself in that case. It will be prudent to water your lawn a couple of times every week for getting the desired outcomes.
12. Use ammonia to burn the clover
While making use of ammonia for burning the clover, make sure to perform it correctly. It will be advisable for you to apply ammonia to the clover one day following the rain. Otherwise, if you don’t like to wait for the rain, make it a point to apply the stuff the next day after watering the grass. Here, we like to suggest you not to make use of household ammonia and use ammonium sulfate instead which is made especially for lawns. While applying ammonia, don’t forget to water the yard properly for getting the desired results.