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 Post subject: Micro clover for turf
PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2013 2:06 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 02, 2013 10:29 am
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Location: Soutwest Colorado
Hi all,

I'm planning on doing a test patch of micro clover (or a mix containing micro clover and grass seed) on my employer's 12-acre grass runway in SW Colorado, at 7,000 feet.

Currently there is a mostly Kentucky Bluegrass, with a small percentage of perrenial rye, plus a smattering of white clover that was broadcast last fall in one area.

The grass is struggling, but the clover is green and happy even in this drought, which leads me to believe we are trying to work against things by trying to grow traditional bluegrass or other turf grasses. The soil is poor (topsoil was scraped a fair bit to level, etc., leaving lots of our clay here) and I know clover is a nitrogen fixer, which couldn't hurt.

Employer is not attached to having a "grass" runway, just one that is reasonably green and functional (barring spray paint!)

Questions:
1) Anyone have experience with micro clover?
2) In particular, any effect on mowing equipment? (ie gumming up blades, etc.?)

(I saw the "high altitude lawn" topic but am interested in branching out from grass, hence this new topic.)

Many thanks,

Liz


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2013 6:54 pm 
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Location: Fort Worth,TEXAS
In the days before plant-specific herbicides were invented, clover was standard in the American lawn, a recognized part of the turf. Once the herbicide was developed, marketers had to create a need so they suggested clover didn't belong in the turf.

Your equipment will be fine. The area will be healthier because clover is a "nitrogen fixer" and the grass it is mixed with will be happier.

Good choice!

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:00 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 02, 2013 10:29 am
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Location: Soutwest Colorado
thanks for your response and the insight re: the development of what we think of as turf. I guess the clover would have crowded out dandelions, etc. Sheesh, that seems to make so much....sense.

Glad to hear I may be on the right track--this is all quite new for me.
I'm also considering overseeding with just clover (instead of grass plus clover).

- I understand Dutch White is a ground hugger--any thoughts on varieties of other low/ dwarf clover that would be recommended?

- Wondering about the need for "brushing" the turf before overseeding with clover--due to thatch build up.

- Considering renting a "no till drill" from the local conservation district, to plant, instead of broadcasting.

Thoughts?

Thanks, happy evening.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 8:27 am 
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I don't have information about varieties, just clover in general. Same with thatch/no-thatch or renting equipment - my 'lawn' is grass and weeds, mowed short - I tilt heavily toward the vegetable garden in my gardening interests. We have several turf experts here, so hopefully one of them will come indoors soon and spot this thread.

You found a good forum to place this question in, so even if it isn't active at the top of the page, someone expert will find it.

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Last edited by northwesterner on Mon Jun 03, 2013 3:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:25 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 02, 2013 10:29 am
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Location: Soutwest Colorado
thank you!


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