According to Johnson's Encyclopaedia, clover or
trefoil is a plant of the genus Trifolium and the family Leguminosae.
The Standard Dictionary defines it as any one of several species of
plants of the genus Trifolium of the bean family Leguminosae. Viewed
from the standpoint
of the American farmer it may be defined in the collective sense as a family of plants leguminous in character, which are unexcelled in furnishing forage and fodder to domestic animals, and unequaled in the renovating influences which they exert upon land. The term Trefoil is given because the leaves are divided into three leaflets. It is also applied to plants not included in the genus, but belonging to the same order. The true clovers have their flowers collected into roundish or oblong heads and in some instances into cone-shaped spikes. The flowers are small and of several colors in the different varieties, as crimson, scarlet, pink, blue, yellow and white, according to the variety, and some are variously tinted. The stems are herbaceous and not twining. The seeds are inclosed in pods or seed sacks, each of which contains one, two and sometimes, but not often, three or four seeds. The plants have tap roots, and in some varieties these go far down into the subsoil. The roots are also in some varieties considerably branched.
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