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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Waller County, TX, USA
    Posts
    148

    Default When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    Im in Waller county, about 40 miles west of Houston, TX. Just curious when I need to get that plot planted so there are flowers for the bees in the spring.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Cookeville, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    68

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    I've always planted in late winter. Clover seed is hard shelled and will be dormant until its ready to sprout. Some farmers actually mix it in with their cattle feed and let the cows spread it. I know all of our ag extension agencies around here, not sure about your area, recommends late January, early February. My first years clover crop has never been as well as i thought it should have been but the second and subsequent is always better.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Greene, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    591

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    What kind of Clover is the best? What do the bees like more; the white or the red?
    No one famous.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Platteville, WI
    Posts
    134

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    White Dutch Clover is best if you want the clover to be low to the ground (yards). I am pretty sure clover can be planted any time of the year, as long as there isn't threat of frost. I've read that Aslike Clover is one of the best clovers for honey, but I have not experienced it. My 1.2 acres has quite a bit of white dutch clover, and I plan on spreading more seed. I will be giving my neighbors whatever seed I have left over. I will spread it right before a good rain. In the summer, it can sprout after just a couple of days. Good luck!
    "Life will find a way - it always finds a way." -Jurassic Park (MOVIE/BOOK)
    USDA Zone 5a

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    Sowing clover seed in late winter, even on top of snow is a common practice.
    As the snow melts the seed contacts the ground, and frost heaving works it in to a suitable depth for germination and it begins to grow when the temperature raises enough.

    Going through the freeze/thaw cycles of early spring will not harm it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,901

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    brazosdog02, if you are planting sweet clover for next years flowers, you need to plant it now in your area I'm thinking. It has to germinate and grow at least a foot or so tall and more importantly develop a good root system to survive the winter. The top growth will die back over the winter, but the root will live and next spring begin to grow again and will get much taller and bloom.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    28,009

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    How many acres do you have? Are you going to make hay off of it too?
    Mark Berninghausen
    Squeak Creek Apiaries



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
    Posts
    4,550

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    Plant a type of clover that is adapted to your area I am not specifically familiar with Waller county but I am not sure I have ever seen sweet clover growing in NE Texas. Lots of Crimson clover and white Dutch though.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Cookeville, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    68

    Default Re: When do I plant sweet clover for my bees?

    I've yet to see any honeybees working red clover around my place. I have heard that their tongues are not long enough to reach the nectar. Not sure if thats true or not. Any of the whites are good in my area. I seed them in the pastures for grazing as well. Clover makes its own nitrogen so it actually helps the soil and surrounding plants.

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