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Old 06-22-2015, 06:42 PM
 
248 posts, read 254,198 times
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We have way too much "yard", about two acres, with 40 apple trees lined up along the long drive. The trees take so much work, that I cannot be bothered with the "lawn", other than mowing it. Even though we're in New England, without a long term water shortage, there is NO WAY I'd waste water on two acres of turf.

We bought this property slightly more than two years ago and I've been trying to figure out how to manage the weed farm that masquerades as a "lawn".

I started throwing, literally, no fancy prep work, Dutch White Clover seed on bare spots last year. I didn't look like it was doing much, but, holy cow! Now that the clover has been in the ground for a year or more, and we've finally had some good rain recently, the stuff is spreading like crazy. It is lovely and it doesn't mind dog pee, and it doesn't care if it's watered much, and it never grows higher than 4-6". Best of all, it is choking out garlic mustard and creeping Charlie...and what little turf grass there is is getting very happy by the proximity of clover.

I'll be throwing more out in the fall, I know, from experience, that there is no point in putting it out at this time of year...too hot for good germination.

for the clover! Good thing I have no abutting neighbors, because I know some folks are grievously offended by clover in their lawn. My plan is for it to BE my "lawn", with some fescue thrown in for balance. .

Last edited by KKay9; 06-22-2015 at 06:54 PM..
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Old 06-22-2015, 09:16 PM
 
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I would be that neighbor, since clover propagates at warp speed, and knows no boundaries lol

I do my best to kill clover (2-4-D recognizes clover as a weed

A little clover is generally ok for a horse but too much can produce anything from Slobbers to photo sensitivity to liver damage. They love the taste of clover and don't have enough sense to know when to stop eating it -----sort of like me with a bag of Hershey's Kisses

It is a horseman's worst forage enemy and most of us make the sign of the cross when the word clover rolls off somebody's lips in a good way lollollol
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Old 06-23-2015, 05:09 AM
 
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I don't have horses, and I have done what the OP did, and I have green out in the yard in certain spots for the first time.
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Old 06-23-2015, 05:17 AM
 
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Horse is boarded elsewhere, we don't keep horses on the property. But, yeah, last year for a bit, there was a lot of clover in one of the turnout paddocks at the barn and whichever horse was in there that day had slobbers until they got rid of it.

The deer and rabbits sure like it, I think it is distracting them from eating other things I'd rather they didn't eat.
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Old 06-23-2015, 05:44 AM
 
Location: NC
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I think it is red clover that is causes slobbers, not white? Clover does so well because it brings with it its own little fertilizer factories that live symbiotically on the roots. I love white clover, the horses enjoy nibbling on it, and the pastures grasses have a benefit from the additional nitrogen in the soil. White clover is a good plant!
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Old 06-23-2015, 06:05 AM
 
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All clovers can cause slobbers

Slobbers or Slaframine Poisoning in Horses

Third paragraph under the horse head pic. I would have copy/pasted it, into this post but me and this IPad are barely on typing terms

Clover has its benefits, just not much to horses at certain times of the year and, if the horse is insulin resistant like one of mine is
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Old 06-23-2015, 06:19 AM
 
Location: NC
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Very interesting article, Normashirley. Here in Raleigh I guess we don't have the cool wet weather that leads to the problem. But did you notice that it is not the clover itself that leads to horse slobbers, it is a fungus that grows on the clover. So the cool wet effect is that it promotes the fungus. Sorry your horse is insulin resistant (a separate problem).
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Old 06-23-2015, 08:31 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luv4horses View Post
Very interesting article, Normashirley. Here in Raleigh I guess we don't have the cool wet weather that leads to the problem. But did you notice that it is not the clover itself that leads to horse slobbers, it is a fungus that grows on the clover. So the cool wet effect is that it promotes the fungus. Sorry your horse is insulin resistant (a separate problem).
Yes and try to figure out when the weather is ripe for that. I gotta say, I have only dealt with serious Slobbers once and it put me to tears, even though I knew it wasn't life threatening.

A few years back, All my horses had Slobbers but one in particular was drooling by the gallons. He soaked his hay and that corner of his stall before I got all the night chores done; I had to redo that corner, give him fresh hay, and hope for the best, until morning

We also have Hop clover which is a low ground cover type clover that spreads and chokes out everything. One year I bought some hay that was full of it. One of the horses colicked on it, I ended up giving the hay to my cow neighbor and had to buy more at the feed store. That was the last year I bought hay from that farmer.

Your humidity has to be worse than ours. Monday at 4:00 PM, our Feels Like was 106

Thank you on the IR horse he is so bad he's on a prescription from the vet to control his insulin. He foundered so bad in 2012, it's a miracle he didn't sink on his LF. It's been a constant battle, ever since.
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Old 06-23-2015, 09:08 AM
 
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Love my clover lawn. I have two small plots in front of my house that I turned into clover lawns and now my front yard tomatoes are really thriving on that. I weed whack it now in then to put that nitrogen into the soil.

My next door neighbor is bewildered but now her lawn is dry and dead and mine is still green and lush even in this heat.

She can stuff it. She doesn't pay the mortgage, taxes or insurance.
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Old 06-23-2015, 09:38 AM
 
Location: Somewhere
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KKAY9 or others - could you post pictures?

We are thinking of throwing some clover seed out on our property at some point. Not sure if we want to try to just make some food plots for the deer and wild turkey or just throw out like you did to help with some bare spots. Also not sure how it would look mixed in with the natural grass that we have at our property and how quickly it would spread (we have several acres so I think we would be OK). Also did you see a huge increase in bees? While I love attracting bees and other things I don't know if I want to have bees all around where I mow and walk. So I'm thinking that trying to just have some specific areas for clover might be best.

If you have pictures when it is just mowed and also pics of when it is in bloom that would be great!
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