Better Pastures for the Tropics - banner


Clover, Subterranean
(Trifolium subterraneum)

  • annual
  • needs winter rain or irrigation
  • fast establishment
  • needs neutral or slightly acid pH and high P soil
  • can cause bloat.

This free-seeding annual pasture legume may have some place in subtropical irrigated pasture mixtures for milk production on neutral or slightly acid soils.

Large-seeded sub clover is planted in grass-legume dairy pastures because it establishes vigorously and can compete against Italian rye grasses. It makes its best growth in autumn and spring, and so must be irrigated for full production; however, it has a minor place in the cooler summer rainfall areas which receive some winter rain.

Sub clover has been used in dairying districts in northern New South Wales, on tableland areas, and on the colder, granitic and traprock areas of southeastern Queensland border districts. Sub clover pastures in this environment need heavy seed rates (up to 14 kg/ha).

The large-leafed Clare is the most suitable variety in subtropical areas.

Creator: Ian Partridge
Date created: 08 April  1998  Revised: 15 January 2003

Better Pastures home page