Do you want a lawn of lush, green grass?
Are you, instead, plagued by a lawn full of patches of white clover?
It is a common frustration for homeowners when wanting more grass than clovers. Clovers attract bees, leading to more stings for you and your children.
Before we discuss how to get rid of clover in grass, it is important to realize there are some benefits. You might realize that keeping it around isn’t all that bad. Here are some advantages.
- Clover helps to fertilize your lawn. The bacteria that attaches to the roots of clover absorbs nitrogen, the nutrient that creates a green lawn.
- Clover prevents other weeds. If you prefer to mow your lawn short, you can if you have clover because other weeds won’t grow.
- You can plant micro-clover to get the benefits without the unsightly drawbacks. Lawns with micro-clover are healthier, greener and have fewer weeds.
What is Clover?
White clover is a perennial weed that typically grows low to the ground. You can find it in most areas, but it is most commonly found in lawns. Sparse lawns give clover the opportunity to sprawl out and grow vivaciously.
Clovers have leaves that grow in sets of three leaflets. The leaflets are tear shaped and have a red stripe on it. White flowers have spikes and a brownish green center.
Homeowners are mostly frustrated by the creeping manner in which clover grounds. Roots will grow wherever a stem node touches the land.
How to Get Rid of Clover in Lawn Naturally without Chemicals
If you still want to get rid of the clover, you will want to try some methods that don’t require chemicals.
1. Fertilize Your Lawn
Clover can grow in under-fertilized lawns well because it makes its own fertilizer. Areas with little nitrogen encourage the growth of clovers. Grass isn’t able to do that.
Take the step to fertilize your grass. Opt for an organic choice for the spring and fall. Your grass will thrive, taking over the area that the clover would steal otherwise.
Clover can grow in flower beds, destroying the beauty you slaved over. Lay a thick layer of mulch over the flower bed to keep the clover at bay. The clover seeds won’t be able to germinate.
3. Corn Gluten
A natural product that is similar to a pre-emergent herbicide is corn gluten. Using it makes it difficult for seeds to sprout by drying them out.
It doesn’t hurt the established plants, but clover is always emerging and spreading out. As corn gluten breaks down into the soil, it provides nitrogen and other nutrients to existing plants.
One of the most common ways to destroy weeds is using vinegar. It increases the pH level of the soil beyond what clover can tolerate.
Vinegar is a cheap and versatile product; you can use it against most weeds efficiently.
You should be aware that it can affect other plants, so avoid spraying it near plants you want to keep. Luckily, it isn’t effective on grass.
5. Hand Pulling
Are you looking for some manual labor?
Hand pulling is an organic method to remove white clover. They grow in clumps, so it is easy to pull them. You have to pull as much of the root system as possible.
Otherwise, it will regrow within a few weeks. Watch for the newest clovers that pop up in your yard. You need to pull it as soon as they grow to avoid an overwhelming problem.
6. Mow High
Some homeowners prefer to mow their grass short, but grass doesn’t appreciate the practice.
Clover likes grass to be mowed short; it is a perennial that can grow from its roots. If you cut your grass below three inches, your grass blades will be stressed, but the clover is happy and thrives.
Mowing high gives your grass the chance to take over the lawn rather than clover and is a great way to get rid of clover in lawn.
7. Opt to Kill the Clover Organically
If the first choices didn’t work as well as you’d like, there are some organic weed killers on the market. Using these options won’t destroy your grass, but it will kill all of the clover on your lawn.
The spray weakens the clover, giving your grass the advantage it needs to overtake. There are quite a few choices; do some research to see which one is more appealing to you.
8. Give Your Lawn Adequate Water
Using a chemical weed killer requires you to keep your lawn properly watered. You should water deeply, at least one inch thick, once or twice a week. Apply the weed killer the day after you deeply water the grass because it isn’t stressed. Spraying the organic herbicide without properly watering it will cause your grass to die as well.
9. Go for the Kill
Even though there are natural choices, there are other options for a weed killer. The most practical option is Roundup and other glyphosate non-selective weed killers. They are an efficient choice, but it will also kill other plants. Destroying the root system is the most important thing.
10. Start Your Lawn Over Again
If clover frustrates you to the point of desperation, the final solution is to start over with a new lawn.
Spray an even coat of a broad leaf herbicide, till the soil, add mulch and fertilize, and reseed the earth for grass.
You could also lay sod if you have more money available. This process is a lot of work, but it gives you a clean slate. You can start lawn care techniques earlier, preventing future problems.
Conclusion of How To Get Rid of Clover in Lawn
White clovers are beneficial to your lawn. When planted correctly, they can create the lush, green lawn you dreamed about when you purchased your home.
However, there are times when clover becomes frustrating and needs to be removed. Try some of the organic methods. Vinegar, corn gluten and hand pulling can eliminate some of the weeds.
If the problem is enormous, you may have a need to pick an herbicide to bring back a healthy lawn rather than one filled with white clovers.