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Sweet Pink Clover by lorilee

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Actually called Red Clover . . . image taken along a
rural northeast Iowa road. USA

Red Clover
Trifolium pratense
Bean family (Fabaceae)

Description: This perennial plant is ½–2’ tall, branching occasionally. The hairy stems are sprawling or erect. The alternate compound leaves are trifoliate. The lower compound leaves have long hairy petioles, while the upper leaves have short petioles or they are sessile. The leaflets are up to 2" long and ¾" across. They are oval-ovate or slightly obovate; sometimes they are a little broader below the middle. Their margins are smooth and ciliate and their tips are blunt. Toward the middle of the upper surface of each leaflet, there is usually a chevron that is white or light green. The leaflets are sessile and lack petioles of their own. At the base of each compound leaf, there is a pair of ovate stipules up to ½" long. The upper stems terminate in flowerheads that are spheroid or ovoid. Usually there are 1-3 leaflets immediately beneath each flowerhead, as well as several green bracts with tips that abruptly taper to a slender tip. Each flowerhead is about 1" across and consists of numerous flowers. These flowers are sessile, tubular-shaped, and spread outward in different directions. Each flower has 5 narrow petals that are pink or purplish pink, becoming light pink or white toward the base of the flowerhead; a rare form of this species with white petals also exists. The upper petal is slightly longer than the lower petals. The light green calyx of each flower has 5 slender teeth and it is usually hairy.

The blooming period usually occurs from late spring to mid-summer and lasts about 1-2 months. However, a few plants may bloom later in the summer or fall. The flowers have a mild honey-like fragrance, while the foliage, when it exists in abundance, produces a distinctive clover-like aroma that is quite pleasant. Each flower is replaced by a small seedpod containing 1 or 2 heart-shaped seeds. The root system consists of a taproot and produces rhizomes. This plant can spread vegetatively or by reseeding itself.

Cultivation: The preference is full sun, mesic conditions, and a loam or clay-loam soil. This plant adds nitrogen to the soil by forming root nodules that accommodate rhizobial bacteria. Partial sun is tolerated.

Range & Habitat: It was introduced from Eurasia as a fodder crop for farm animals and as a cover crop to improve agricultural soil. Habitats include fields, pastures, weedy meadows, vacant lots, grassy areas along roads, waste areas, and degraded prairie remnants. This plant occurs in native habitats occasionally, but it is only slightly to moderately aggressive. It is often found in grassy areas that are not subjected to regular mowing.


flowers, wildflowers, clover, pink

Hello! I am a wife, mother, worship leader and piano teacher. Photography is a new passion of mine. I also enjoy singing, playing the piano & flute, bicycling and the theatre! Thank you for all your kindness and support here. God bless you!

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  • barnsis
    barnsis10 months ago

    Excellent macro, love the fuzz on the stalk

  • Thank you, Byron & Julie!! You always notice the “little things!!” :o)

    – lorilee

  • Brenda Boisvert
    Brenda Boisvert10 months ago

    Beautiful image, Lori:-)

  • Thanks, Brenda!!! :o)

    – lorilee

  • julie08
    julie0810 months ago

    Beautiful :)

  • Thank you so much, Julie!!

    – lorilee

  • Carol Knudsen
    Carol Knudsen10 months ago

    Awesome close-up Lorilee :)

  • Thank you, Carol!! :o)

    – lorilee

  • Julie  White
    Julie White10 months ago

    Outstanding beauty lorilee.

  • Thanks, Julie!! You’re very kind!!

    – lorilee

  • Rick  Friedle
    Rick Friedle10 months ago

    Great macro!

  • Thank you so much, Rick!!

    – lorilee

  • teresa731
    teresa73110 months ago

    Beautiful capture.. please consider entering into Bicolor Beauties!!

  • Thank you, Teresa!!! :o)

    – lorilee

  • TomBaumker
    TomBaumker10 months ago

    Beautiful macro my friend ! Hugs

  • Thanks, Tom!!! :o)

    – lorilee

  • Jack Ryan
    Jack Ryan10 months ago

    Wonderful color and clarity…quite beautiful.

  • Thank you so much, Jack!!

    – lorilee

  • TheaDaams
    TheaDaams10 months ago

    Beautiful image!

  • Thank you, Thea!!! :o)

    – lorilee

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