Some homeowners like clover in their lawn, but many don’t. If white clover is springing up and creeping out in patches in your yard, there are several ways you can get rid of it. If you’re interested in going green, there’s good news—you don’t have to use harsh chemicals. There are a number of simple ways to get rid of clover in your lawn naturally.
This Old House has rounded up the best methods for getting rid of clover in your lawn naturally, some of which won’t even harm your grass. Once you’ve eradicated your clover problem, The This Old House Reviews Team recommends hiring a professional lawn care company to keep your lawn healthy, hardy, and robust—much less likely to attract clover. We recommend TruGreen, an industry leader that offers five annual programs and a la carte services.
Here are the top ways to eliminate clover in your lawn the natural way:
For small patches, you can remove the clover manually. Gently loosen the soil with a spade and tug the clover out, roots and all. If you leave any roots behind, the clover will grow back.
You can kill clover by blocking it from all oxygen and sunlight. Take plastic sheeting or a garbage bag and place it over the patch, securing the corners with rocks to make sure it doesn’t fly up. This should get rid of the clover in a few weeks. Be mindful that this approach will also kill any grass that gets under the plastic.
Create your own non-toxic weed killer with this natural home remedy.
You can apply A.D.I.O.S. which is a selective, organic herbicide that will kill clover but not harm surrounding grass. Simply spray it on clover, and the weed will weaken and die.
There are a number of ways you can prevent clover from growing in your lawn in the first place.
Using organic, slow-release, nitrogen-rich fertilizer will make your lawn less hospitable to clover. Some homeowners prefer traditional, fast-release fertilizer because it grows grass quickly and costs less. However, using organic fertilizer will lead to healthier growth in the long run. Common organic fertilizers include cow manure, guano, blood meal, bone meal, earthworm castings, and liquid kelp.
Corn meal gluten releases organic peptides into your soil, preventing the clover’s growth. This won’t work on existing clover, but will prevent new seeds from sprouting—indiscriminately, so be careful not to use this method if you’ve recently reseeded your lawn.
Luckily, this measure won’t harm existing nearby grass. You can purchase corn gluten meal at your local garden store or online.
Clover grows best in grass less than 3 inches tall. This height stresses your grass, making it easier for clover to spread. Mowing your grass high gives it an advantage, making it easier for it to outcompete the clover.
There are multiple reasons you could have clover sprouting up in your lawn, most of which have to do with your soil.
You may not like the look of clover, but it can actually benefit your lawn.
TruGreen does not offer natural weed control, but with its TruNatural Lawn Care Plan, it offers natural fertilization, which can keep clover from growing in the first place. The lawn care company also offers five different annual programs and a variety of a la carte services so that you can customize your lawn care for your lawn’s unique needs. To get a free quote, call (866) 817-2287 or fill out this easy form.
A.D.I.O.S. selective organic weed control kills weeds but does not harm lawn grasses, as does corn gluten meal.
There are several reasons you may want to keep clover in your lawn. Due to its symbiotic relationship with bacteria, clover acts as a natural fertilizer. Clover gets its nitrogen from the air and releases it into the soil. Another benefit? Clover outcompetes other weeds. So instead of something unwanted and unsightly, you could have clover.
You can control fertilizer with proper fertilization, mowing high, applying corn gluten meal or a vinegar solution, hand-pulling it, depriving it of oxygen and sunlight, hitting it with an organic pre-emergent herbicide, or using a traditional herbicide.
Clover can take over your lawn in the right conditions—low grass, the wrong soil pH, compacted soil, and poor nitrogen levels are excellent growing conditions for clover.
To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews team firstname.lastname@example.org.