Back to top

White and Ladino Clover

White Clover

Description and Adaptation of White Clover (Trifolium repens)


First cultivated in northern Europe. Ladino clover, is a large form of white clover, originated near Lodi in the Po River Valley in northern Italy.

Plant Characteristics

Root System - Seeding plant develops several small short tap roots. Additional short fine roots arise at the nodes of trailing stems which spread over the ground. Because of the relatively small shallow root system, white clover, including Ladino, is very sensitive to dry weather.

Stems - Main stems trail on the ground surface, but many upright stems or petioles, some bearing leaves and some seed heads, arise at nodes. Stems and leaves are soft and succulent, making white clover and Ladino the most palatable and nutritious of the clovers.

Flower head - Flower heads and flowers are white and smaller than those of red clover.

Soil Adaptation

Adapted only to soil with moderate to good moisture relationships. Ladino clover and New Zealand type white clovers are among the most productive, palatable, and nutritious legumes available, especially for pasture. The most serious problem is animal bloat, hence these clovers must be grazed with caution. Ladino clover is larger leafed and more suited to hay situations when combine with grass than Dutch or common white clover.