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Lindsay's Flora Blog - 4th May

Posted: Monday 4th May 2020 by trustadmin

Western Clover Trifolium occidentale

This plant can be frequently found on Alderney at this time of year in coastal turf but is probably often mistaken for the more generally widespread and better known White Clover (Trifolium repens). It is actually quite special, however, as it is classed as nationally scarce.

It was apparently discovered in 1957, and described as a new species from Cornwall and the Channel Islands in 1961. It was subsequently found in Ireland in 1979 and Wales in 1987 and has been more widely recorded since.

It is smaller and slenderer than White Clover, with red tinged stipules and calyx, and the leaves are unmarked (White Clover leaves usually have a white pattering), smaller and a blueish green. It also appears earlier, from late April.

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