Home Plant List

Malheur Experiment Station
Oregon State University

Trifolium pratense

Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)
Trifolium pratense
Common Names red clover
Family Legume or Pea
Flower Color Pink
Plant Type Herb
Location McCall
Native No
Weed No

Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)
Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)

Red Clover is a common plant, considered a weed by many people. It spreads quickly, often crowding out other plants. It can grow about 20 inches tall. Flowers are purple or pink. Flower heads are made up of many small flowers. Each flower head is between 1/2 inch and one inch wide. It grows in fields, open forest, forest edges, paths, gardens, and lawns.

This plant can be helpful to other plants, as well as a problem, because it can put nitrogen in the soil which other plants can use.

Red Clover was introduced from Europe and is a food source for many animals, including: White-tailed Deer, Wild Turkey, Red Fox, Eastern Cottontail, Woodchuck, and earthworms.

Some species of adult butterflies which visit Red Clover flowers include: Monarch, Eastern Black Swallowtail, Pearl Crescent, Spicebush Swallowtail, Cabbage White, Great Spangled Fritillary, Painted Lady, and Red Admiral. Bees, butterflies, and other insects help pollinate Red Clover.

Medical Uses: A tea from the flower has long been considered an antispasmodic and mild sedative and has been used for various lung and throat problem such as sore throats, coughs and asthma. The flowers were once used as an asthma treatment. Externally it is used as a salve for burns and sores. There seems to be no scientific evidence to support medical uses of Clover, but, being edible it probably can't hurt unless it is used instead of more effective treatments.


For additional information please send an e-mail request to:
Dr. Clinton C. Shock
Clinton.Shock@oregonstate.edu

Malheur Agricultural Experiment Station
595 Onion Avenue
Ontario, OR 97914
(541) 889-2174
FAX (541) 889-7831

Malheur Experiment Station Web Site Purpose and Policy OSU Home Page OSU disclaimer