Scientific name: Trifolium repens
- Order: Fabales
- Family: Fabaceae
- Genus: Trifolium
- Species: T. repens
The white clover is part of the Fabaceae, or pea, family and is native to Europe and Asia. Commonly found on lawns and grassy fields in North America, the white clover attracts bumblebees, which turn the nectar into honey.
The genus name Trifolium comes from the Latin words for “three” and “leaf”, while the species name repens comes from the word for “creeping”.
Food for humans: You can mix boiled white clover leaves into salads.
Food for animals: Numerous animals eat white clover on a daily basis. Moose, deer, rabbits, and grizzly bears eat the leaves and flowers, while numerous types of birds consume the seeds.
Have you ever found a “four-leaf clover”? These rare clovers, good-luck charms in some cultures, can be found in the wild, though four-leaf clovers are rare. Even five-leaf clovers exist, but these are even rarer. Also related to the white clover is the shamrock — a symbol with three heart-shaped leaves on a stem — which often bring St. Patrick’s Day or a certain playing card suit into mind.