Clovers can be a real nuisance, particularly when they pop up in your well-thought-out flower beds. Not only do they change the entire aesthetic of the flower bed, but they also spread quickly and threaten to take over your garden too.
So how do you get rid of clovers in a flower bed? You can get rid of clovers in a flower bed by either digging them out, mulching them over or by applying certain safe fungicides (such as vinegar, baking soda, or even corn gluten). Either way, you need to do so with utmost care to protect the flowers.
With a reputation for growing in a range of conditions and smothering its nearby weedy peers, clovers are undoubtedly resilient and aggressive.
Whilst getting rid of them can take several weeks, it’s very much possible.
And fortunately, there are some simple steps you can take to get rid of them as well as prevent their return.
From the best ways to remove them to key considerations throughout the process, you’ll find all of the information you need below.
You’ll be a clover-removing pro in no time!
Why Have I Got Clovers Growing In My Flower Beds?
The likely reason why you have clovers growing in your flowers beds are a lack of nitrogen, or a PH balance issue.
Believe it or not, those pesky clovers didn’t come out of nowhere!
Rather, there are a couple of underlying reasons for their existence.
The first is nitrogen. Or rather, a lack of.
Clovers take in the nitrogen that they need from the air.
They don’t need it from the soil, so they wind up growing in soil with low nitrogen levels.
It’s all quite logical!
This, along with the pH level of your soil, are the two key contributors to the presence of clovers in your treasured flower beds.
How To Effectively Remove Clovers From A Flower Bed
Clovers have long proven to be a real pain for gardeners around the world.
They’re unsightly, spread quickly, and are very capable of affecting the health of your flower beds for the worse.
Fortunately, there are a variety of methods you can use to get rid of them. I’ve rounded up the best of them below!
Stay focused on the goal. You want to remove the clovers and the clovers alone.
You definitely don’t want to cause harm to the innocent surrounding flowers that you’ve worked so hard to grow.
Thus, your first call of action is to head out into the garden and examine your flower bed.
Gain an understanding of where the clovers are in proximity to your flowers.
Once you know the space, you’ll be a much more confident gardener!
Why not get hands-on?
When faced with a plethora of clovers, many gardeners opt to pull them out of the ground.
Doing so is as simple as loosening the soil and digging them out.
Of course, a weed-pulling tool is always a handy accomplice.
To prevent the clovers from returning any time soon, be sure to remove their root systems.
However, stay clear of the roots of your flowers. Be as accurate as possible!
This approach is undoubtedly rather time-consuming, especially if you’re dealing with a significant infestation.
But the results will be thorough and worth it, and you’ll have a sense of accomplishment like no other.
Vinegar is a domestic tool like no other.
It’s capable of so many things, and eliminating clovers is just one of them.
Combine the vinegar with water and dish soap in a spray bottle, and spray the clovers repeatedly over the course of a few days or even a few weeks.
Whatever it takes!
Slowly but surely, the clovers will dry out.
Their ill health will be evident in both their dry texture and color.
Now, rather than their usual shade of green, they’ll be a yellowish brown.
Once they’re dead, remove them using your weed puller and dispose of them carefully.
Baking soda is yet another environmentally sound way to remove clovers from your flower bed.
As with vinegar, a solution consisting of baking soda and water alone will dry out the clovers.
It’s a tried and tested weed removal process, and one that I certainly recommend by way of its clean nature, effectiveness, and accessibility.
Additionally, you could remove the clovers from your flower bed by mulching them.
Applying a thick layer of mulch on top of them will essentially suffocate them whilst simultaneously depriving them of the sunlight and water that they need to grow.
There’s no way they’ll emerge unscathed, and it’s a great way to target them with great precision and subsequently avoid posing a risk to your surrounding plants.
Hear me out.
Corn gluten, which can easily be found online or in most garden stores, is a great way to prevent the growth and spread of clovers.
It releases peptides that damage the clovers but won’t harm any of your existing plants.
It’s a great way to prevent a large infestation, and it remains effective for almost two months after its application.
Pre-made weed killer is an effective solution too.
Opt for an organic variety to limit the suboptimal effects on the environment, and spray away in line with the instructions on the bottle.
Clovers are fairly resilient, so it may take a few sprays before they’re dead and gone.
How Long Does It Take To Remove Clovers from a Flower Bed?
Whilst you may get lucky and terminate them within just a few days, it usually takes several weeks to truly remove clovers from a flower bed. This is based on the assumption that you’re dealing with a fair few of them. After all, they spread extremely rapidly!
If you’re using a homemade or store-bought herbicide, expect to carry out several resprays.
If you opt for the use of corn gluten, be patient and wait it out.
However, if you choose to dig them out, they’ll be gone right away!
Things To Consider When Removing Clovers From A Flower Bed
Clovers are perennials, which means they’ll naturally return every year like clockwork.
To prevent this, you’ll need to remove every single trace of them.
This is why many gardeners choose to dig them out.
The approach allows for full reign over their root systems in a way that spraying them with a herbicide simply cannot.
It’s undeniably the most permanent approach of the above-mentioned methods.
Speed Is A Must
As mentioned, clovers spread very quickly.
It may not be long before a few clovers transform into a full-blown infestation.
Move quickly and tackle them as soon as you see them.
Better yet, prevent them through the proactive use of a pre-emergent herbicide.
Review Your Soil
Use a fertilizer!
Clovers grow well in low fertile soil, which is nitrogen deprived.
By using a well-balanced fertilizer and ensuring your soil is generally healthy and equipped with sufficient nitrogen, it’s likely that you’ll prevent clovers from sprouting in the first place, let alone thriving.
Additionally, clovers thrive in soil with a pH of around 6.0, so if you keep the pH of your soil below this level, you’re likely to keep them at bay.
This is particularly important if you’re using a chemical herbicide.
Aim for the clovers, ensure that your spray bottle isn’t on a mist setting, and wait for still weather conditions.
Taking these measures will reduce the risk of you harming the surrounding plant life.
Other guides you may want to check out:
- How To Get Rid Of Mushrooms In A Flower Bed
- How To Get Rid Of Nutsedge In Flower Bed
- How To Get Rid Of Bermuda Grass In Flower Beds
Hey there – I’m Jesse, a professional florist, and gardening enthusiast. I created MyGardenFlowers to share all that I can about the flowers that I have planted and managed to grow in my garden.