Trifolium pannonicum Jacq. - Hungarian Clover

Taxonomic position.

Family Leguminosae Endl., sect. Trifolium L.

Biology and morphology.

It is a perennial herb. It is tap-rooted with numerous lateral roots. Stems are 40 to 80 cm tall, erect or ascending, hairy, striated stems with few branches. Stipules linear to oblong, somewhat papery with green veins, united to the leaf stalks nearly half their length, the free portion awl-shaped. Leaves: lower ones with long stalks, progressively shorter upwards; the uppermost almost stalk-less. Leaflets of the lower leaves about 1 cm long, elliptical or obovate; middle and upper leaves with oblong to lance-shaped leaflets, 3.0 to 8.0 cm long and 1.0 to 2.0 cm wide, having blunt or slightly indented tips, the uppermost sometimes pointed at the tips. Heads solitary on the ends of the stems, ovoid or oblong, elongating later, many-flowered, 4 to 7 cm long, 3 to 4 cm wide, borne on short or long stalks, often subtended by the uppermost opposite leaves. Flowers reach up to 2.5 cm long, white to cream. Calyx cylindrical at first, later bell-shaped, the tube with ten veins, hairy, 4 to 5 mm long, the lobes awl-shaped, sharply pointed, up to twice as long as the tube. Corolla is twice as long as the calyx, with oblong standard which is much longer than the wings and keel. Fruiting calyx with the mouth closed by two thickenings and the lobes are spread like a star. Pods are papery with leathery apex, 1-seeded. Flowering period occurs during June-August. Plant is self-incompatible, cross-pollinated. 2n = 48, 49, 60, 65, 126, 128, 130, 180.


Moldova and the Ukraine.


Meadows, forest clearings, steppes, dry slopes. Plant adapts to a wide range of soil and climatic conditions.

Utilization and economic value.

It is an excellent forage crop with high nutritive value. Characterized by longevity (in cultivation it can be used up to 10 years). Hairiness of the plants does not limit the good palatability by animals. It is an excellent plant for honey production. There is a risk of bloating for animals. Good seed producer. It is characterized by high winter hardiness and high drought resistance.

Reference citations:

Brezhnev D.D., Korovina O.N. 1980. Wild relatives of the cultivated plants of flora of the USSR. Leningrad: Kolos. 376 pp. (In Russian)
Galushko, A.I. 1980. Flora of Northern Caucasus. V. 2. A field guide. Rostov-na-Donu. 350 pp. (In Russian)
Grossheim, A.A. 1952. Genus Trifolium. Flora of the Caucasus. V. 5. Moscow-Leningrad: AN USSR. 191-221 p. (In Russian)
Kolakovskiy, A.L. 1958. Flora of Abhasiya. V. 3. Tbilisi. 292 pp. (In Russian.
Mosel H. 1965. Comparative Chorology of the Flora of Central Europe. Jena. 583 p.
Mukhina, N.A. & A.K. Stankevich, ed. 1993. Flora of cultivated plants. V. 13. Trifolium, Lotus. Moscow: Kolos. 334 pp. (In Russian)
Phyodorov, A.A., ed. 1987. Flora of the European part of the USSR. V. 6. 254 pp. (In Russian)
Schishkin, V.K. & E.G. Bobrov, ed. 1945. Flora of the USSR. V. 11. Moscow-Leningrad: AN USSR. 129-176 p. (In Russian)

© Dzyubenko N.I., Dzyubenko E.A.


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