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Home > SEEDS - Lawn Grass > Grass Alternatives > White Dutch Clover Seed

White Dutch Clover As Alternative Grass Lawn

Trifolium repens L.~~
White Dutch Clover Seed is gaining popularity among homeowners and others as an alternative to traditional grass lawns. You may mix White Dutch Clover into an existing grass lawn or use it solo as an alternative lawn. Dutch White clover can work as a lawn alternative on a smaller scale but may present some issues for larger lawn areas. You may choose to plant a new lawn with a combination of eco-friendly grass and White Dutch Clover. This clover is a soil nitrogen fixer so there is no need to use expensive and harmful chemical nitrogen fertilizers.

See our section on Pasture uses of White Dutch Clover for information on White Dutch Clover as a forage crop.

White Dutch Clover Features

  • Grows to a height of four to eight inches in a thick mat
  • Tolerates low mowing well (if desired)
  • Spreads to fill in empty spaces
  • Stays green through droughty periods of summer
  • Tolerates dog urine
  • Provides nitrogen (up to 2 pounds of n/1000 square feet) for the other grasses in the lawn, eliminating the need to fertilize
  • Looks good especially if it is blended evenly throughout the lawn.
  • Attracts butterflies, bees and other pollinators
Please click on the products below for more pictures of White Dutch Clover.

White Dutch Clover Seed
Code Name Image Price    
CLOV-DUTCH-01 White Dutch Clover Coated Seed - 1 LB.- Perennial Alternative Lawn,Food Plot,Pasture - Inoculated $19.95
CLOV-DUTCH-05 White Dutch Clover COATED Seed - 5 LB.- Perennial Alternative Lawns,Food Plot,Pasture - Inoculated $69.95
CLOV-DUTCH-50 White Dutch Clover Coated Seed - 50 LB.- Perennial Alternative Lawn,Food Plots - Inoculated $259.00


Planting Dutch White Clover

Planting Dates: Early Spring or Late Summer
Planting Rate: 4-8 lbs per acre
Planting Depth:1/4" - no deeper
Soil : White Dutch clover will grow best if planted in moist, well-drained soils. It also requires a neutral soil pH in order to reach its full growth potential. White Dutch is more tolerant of poor soils than other white clovers and will survive on slightly acidic, sandy soils.
Fertility: Do not apply nitrogen to lawns containing White Clovers. The two most important soil fertility factors in growing white clover are pH and phosphorus. A soil test is recommended for determining nutrients needed.
Inoculants: Clover, as with other legumes, should be inoculated for proper nitrogen processing. Inoculants are cultures of nitrogen fixing nodule bacteria in a peat based medium. Be sure and purchase an inoculant if your legume seeds are not pre-inoculated and you are planting on a poor soil with low nitrogen levels.
Germination: Clover plants will emerge 2 to 3 days after planting in the summer or hot humid climates (day temperatures of at least 75°).

The small, yellow seeds of Dutch White Clover have a hard seed coat that permits germination many years after the initial seeding. Even though this is a fact you may have to re-seed every 2 to 3 years to keep full coverage for a lawn. But this is a lot less costly than the known environmental risks and expense of using chemical nitrogen fertilizers.

Seeding & Overseeding Lawns With Dutch White Clover

If overseeding, mow existing grass to the lowest height you can without killing it. Broadcast seed as evenly as possible covering bare spots that are evident ( I used a Spyker spreader with a setting of 1.5). You may want to mix the tiny clover seed with dry sand or soil. Inoculate if necessary, following the instructions on inoculant package. Lightly rake seed into soil with a stiff rake no deeper than 1/4". It is alright to see seed on the ground. Keep the seeded area watered for the first 10 days keeping it moist.

More Facts To Consider

Do not mix white Dutch Clover with grass seed that contain fungicides if you must inoculate. Doing so will kill the natural bacteria inoculant used while planting the clover thus defeating it's purpose. If you are planting a new lawn and wish to include White Dutch Clover, we suggest using a grass seed with no coating (raw seed). Alternatively, you can mix coated grass seed with White Dutch Clover if your soil is not "nitrogen challenged" or plant the seed a few days apart, planting the clover first.

White Dutch Clover will be killed by broadleaf herbicides so do not use these on your lawn. Of course, why would you? You are trying to avoid chemicals by planting this environmentally safe, natural grass alternative.

Using White Dutch Clover Solo In A Lawn

When planting White Dutch Clover as an alternative lawn or solo, it is best to do this in a smaller lawn area. While it has the benefit of being nitrogen-fixing (adds nitrogen to the soil), it is not very drought-tolerant when grown at the density needed to serve as a lawn alternative in a larger area. It does not recuperate from heavy foot traffic as well as a grass lawn. Another drawback is that clover stains on clothing are more difficult to launder than grass stains.

Dutch white clover attracts lots of honeybees, bumblebees and other pollinators to the flowers which is a concern to people who are sensitive to insect stings. Some people may appreciate all the bee activity, the butterflies and other pollinators that are attracted to flowering clover.

White Clover in Low Maintenance Lawns - Cornell Cooperative Extension
The Author - Debra Johnson

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