Clover is widely used as a forage crop or as a component in bee, ornamental, fallow or extensive use mixtures. The various colours of flowers of the different clovers make them very attractive. In general the different clovers have good establishment vigour and they perform well under a cover crop. In our portfolio we have several clover species.
Berseem clover (Trifolium alexandrinum) is a leguminous green manure crop with a moderate development in autumn. Berseem or Egyptian clover is moderately sensitive to frost and begins to mineralize very soon after it dies off. This clover has a positive effect on the crop development and yield of the subsequent crop. It is an excellent partner for mixtures.
Crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum) is widely grown as a protein-rich forage crop for cattle and other livestock. It should be sown as quickly as possible after the grain harvest. The crop prefers a lightly cultivated soil with, for example, scarifier and harrow over ploughed soil. It grows rapidly in spring and yields an abundant crop of green, highly palatable feed. It is also suitable for making hay.
Red clover (Trifolium pratense) is widely grown as a forage crop, valued for its nitrogen fixation, which increases soil fertility. For this reason it is also used as a green manure crop. The latest varieties guarantee a yield security which offers year-round fresh protein.
White clover (Trifolium repens) is considered to be a beneficial component of natural or organic pasture mixtures, due to its ability to fix nitrogen and out-compete pasture weeds. Natural nitrogen fixation reduces leaching from the soil and can reduce the incidence of some diseases that are enhanced by the availability of synthetic fertilizer. White clover increases pasture production in nitrogen poor conditions.
Persian clover (Trifolium resupinatum) is a type of clover that is suitable for single crop cultivation as well as mixed with annual and perennial fodder grasses for fodder or hay production. Its high protein and dry matter content makes Persian clover an ideal fodder plant.
Birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) is used in agriculture as a forage plant, grown for pasture, hay and silage. It can be used as an alternative to alfalfa on poor soils. It fits very well in mixtures for dry locations and it is specifically suitable for chalky soils.
Black medick (Medicago lupulina) is sometimes used as a fodder plant. It can withstand drought well. Whilst being of good nutritional value, its biomass production is not very high. It is sometimes used in the composition of artificial pastures, especially when sown in dry soil. It is a common sight in natural pastures. It is also a flower that can be used for the production of honey.