How to remove clover from your lawn

This Morning: Carol Klein offers advice on gardening in spring

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Clovers grow in most temperate and subtropical parts of the world, excluding Southeast Asia and Australia. The plants are useful as livestock feed and can also be used as green manure. The clover flowers are highly attractive to bees and clover honey is a popular by-product of clover cultivation.

How to remove clover from your lawn

Clover or trefoil are common names for flowering plants in the legume or pea family.

A number of clovers and clover-like species can be a persistent nuisance in lawns, especially as they have a strong resistance to weedkillers.

Clovers are perennial weeds which are easily recognised by their trifoliate leaves.

You can find clover all over your garden, especially on lawns.

Benefits of clover

Clover can be beneficial for your lawn and therefore if you wish you keep these plants, you will likely see the following benefits:

  • Clover fertilises your lawn
  • Clover prevents other weeds from growing
  • Clover does not mind when it is mowed when it is tall.
  • Clover can help to make your lawn appear more green and luscious.


You can use a weedkiller to remove clover in spring or early summer.

It is best to wait until your clover’s growth is at its most vigorous before using the weedkiller.

You should then reapply weed killer throughout the summer when necessary,

Apply the weedkiller in cool, moist and calm conditions so there is less of a risk of damaging nearby plants.

If you wish to create a non-toxic weed killer, you can mix one cup of vinegar with a cup of water and a drop of washing up liquid.

Shake this solution thoroughly to remove any patches of clover and then spray it onto the clover.

The vinegar will cause the clover leaves to dry out and the washing up liquid will make sure the solution sticks to the leaves.

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If you wish to deal with clover on your lawn organically, you should dig out the affected areas and replace them with patches of weed-free grass.

In other areas of your garden, you should make an effort to remove the affected areas.

You can reuse clover because it has nitrogen-fixing nodules on its roots and so it acts as excellent green manure when it is dug back into the soil.


Another way to remove clover from your lawn is to cover parts of your garden with plastic sheathing.

The clovers will die in a few weeks, due to a lack of sunlight and oxygen.

With this method, however, you should bear in mind there is a chance the surrounding grass will get destroyed, along with the clover.

Corn gluten

You can cover clover with corn gluten to prevent clover seeds from sprouting.

This remedy will not cause any damage to your surrounding plants and is easy to find.

To kill your clover, you should spread around 20lbs of corn gluten per 1,000 square feet of lawn and water the area thoroughly.

Over time, the clover will stop growing in this area.

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