white sweet clover

(Melilotus albus)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

white sweet clover

NatureServe

NNA - Not applicable

SNA - Not applicable

Minnesota

not listed

Wetland
Indicator
Status

Great Plains

FACU - Facultative upland

Midwest

FACU - Facultative upland

Northcentral & Northeast

FACU - Facultative upland

Weed Status

Invasive

Nativity

Native to Asia, Europe, North Africa, and the Indian subcontinent. Introduced and naturalized in North America.

Occurrence

Common

 
Habitat

Disturbed sites, roadsides.

 
Flowering

May to September

 
Flower Color

White

 
Height

1 to 8

     

Identification

This is a 1 to 8 tall, erect, freely branching, biennial forb with a strong taproot. The stems are light green and hairless. The taller plants tend to be bushy, the shorter plants lanky. In the first year they are small and do not flower. In the second year they are taller, bushy, and produce many flower clusters.

The compound leaves are alternate, hairless and divided into three leaflets.The leaflets are oblanceolate or obovate, ½ to 1 long and up to ¼ wide. They are grayish-green, finely toothed along the middle and upper margins, the teeth pointed outward rather than forward. The middle leaflet is on a distinct stalk.

The inflorescence is many tall, spike-like clusters of stalked flowers. The clusters are on elongated stems produced in the axils of the middle and upper leaves. The flowering stems are 2 to 6 long. Dozens of small flowers are crowded along the top two thirds of the stem.

The flowers are to long and are attached to the stem with a minute stalk. They droop down but ascend at the tip.

 
Similar
Species

Yellow sweet clover (Melilotus officinalis) has yellow flowers. It is usually a little shorter than white sweet clover. The foliage is plain green, not grayish-green. It blooms 2 to 3 weeks earlier than white sweet clover.


Distribution Distribution Map   Sources: 4, 5, 7, 22.

Comments

Taxonomy
Some authorities consider white sweet clover and yellow sweet clover (Melilotus officinalis) the same species with differently colored flowers. Most authorities, including Gleason & Cronquist (1991) and Mohlenbrock (2002), treat it as a separate species.


Taxonomy

Family:

Fabaceae (pea)

 

Subfamily:

Faboideae (Papilionoideae)

 

Tribe:

Trifolieae

 
Synonyms

Melilotus alba

Melilotus leucanthus

 
Common
Names

bokhara-clover

honey clover

white melilot

white sweet clover

white sweet-clover


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

compound leaf

A leaf that is divided into leaflets, each leaflet having the general appearance of a leaf, with all leaflets attached to a single leaf stem.

 

oblanceolate

Reverse lanceolate; much longer than wide, thickest toward the tip, and gradually tapering toward the base.

 

obovate

Reverse egg-shaped, with the attachment at the narrower end.

       

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MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos

   

Inflorescence

  white sweet clover   white sweet clover
       
  white sweet clover   white sweet clover
       

Flowers

  white sweet clover    
       
       

 

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Slideshows

   
  Sweet White Clover
Andree Reno Sanborn
 
  Sweet White Clover  
 
About

pea family

Melilotus alba

Farmers will plant this in rotation in their fields to replenish the nitrogen in the soil.

 
     
  Melilotus alba WHITE SWEET CLOVER
Frank Mayfield
 
  Melilotus alba WHITE SWEET CLOVER  

 

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Other Videos

 
  White Sweet Clover
hiddengrousefarm
 
   
 
About

Published on Aug 19, 2012

White sweet clover ID and control

 
     
  White Sweet-Clover (Melilotus albus, Melilotus alba) ~ Introduced Species
Wandering Sole TV
 
   
 
About

Published on Jul 22, 2013

White Sweet-Clover (Melilotus albus, Melilotus alba) is native to Europe and was introduced to the North American Continent as a forage crop. It is a member of the pea (Fabaceae) family. Quoting Wikipedia: "It was introduced to North America in the 17th century for cattle forage purposes and is now widespread throughout Canada and the United States, where it has become invasive and can outcompete native plant species." A gangly plant, it can grow up to heights of 2m.

White Sweet-Clover also goes by the names of Bokhara clover, honey clover, tree clover, sweet clover, white-flowered sweet clover, and white melilot.

 
     
  Bokhara Clover (Melilotus Albus) / White Honey Flower - 2012-06-26
W3stlander
 
   
 
About

Published on Jun 27, 2012

Melilotus albus (Bokhara clover, honey clover, tree clover, sweet clover, white-flowered sweet clover, white sweet clover, white melilot)

------------------
De Witte honingklaver (Melilotus albus) is een plant uit de vlinderbloemenfamilie (Leguminosae).

 
     

 

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