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not only be prevented, but since sweet clover is a biennial, the plants will die. When thus dealt with, the only source from which other plants may come while extermination is being thus sought is from seed lodged in the soil and still capable of germinating. CHAPTER XII.
MISCELLANEOUS VARIETIES OF CLOVER
In addition to the varieties of clover that have been discussed at some length in previous chapters are a number the value of which may be considerable to areas more or less local and limited. These include Sainfoin, Egyptian clover, Yellow clover, Sand lucerne, Japanese clover, Beggarweed and Seaside clover. Some of these, as Sainfoin and Buffalo clover, have been in the country for several years, and yet but little is known as to their behavior, except in very limited areas. Others, as Buffalo clover, native to the country are thought to have merit, and yet the degree of such merit does not appear to have been yet proved under cultivation. The three varieties but recently introduced are thought to have considerable promise for certain soils and climates to which they have special adaptation, but sufficient trial has not been given them to determine even approximately the measure of their worth to this country. These varieties will now be discussed, but for the reasors stated above it will be manifest that the discussion will of necessity be imperfect and fragmentary in character.
SAINFOIN Sainfoin (Onobrychis sativa) is a perennial, leguminous, clover-like forage plant of the bean family. The word Sainfoin is equivalent to the French words for sound or wholesome hay. It is also frequently called Esparcette or Asperset, more especially in Germany. It is further known in England by the name Cock's Head, French Grass and Medick Vetchling. In some parts of France and Switzerland the name has been and probably is yet applied to lucerne (Medicago sativa).
In its habit of growth it is more woody in the rootstock than clover and more branched. It also grows to a greater average height. The stems, which are covered with fine hairs, bear numerous leaves long and pinnate. The blossoms are numerous and of an attractive, pinkish color, brightening into a crimson tint. The seed pods are flattened from side to side and wrinkled, and are also sickleshaped. They bear but one seed. The roots are strong and more or less branched.
Sainfoin, as already intimated, is perennial in its habit of growth. When a field is once well set with the plants, it should continue to produce crops for a decade, but will eventually be crowded out with weeds or other grasses. It grows very early in the season, quite as early, if not earlier, than alfalfa, and continues to grow until autumn.
The feeding value of sainfoin is much the same as that of alfalfa. It is much esteemed where it can be grown for the production of pasture, of soiling food, and also hay, valuable for enriching the land, through the medium of the roots, and also when the tops are plowed under as green manure.
Sainfoin is native throughout the whole of Cen
tral Europe and over much of Siberia. Although native to the southern counties of England, it does not appear to have been cultivated there before the year 1651, at which time it is said to have been introduced from Flanders. From what has been said with reference to the distribution of sainfoin in Europe and Asia, it will be apparent that it is a hardy plant, which has highest adaptation for climates temperate and mild to moderately cool. Its hardihood has been shown by its surviving the winters in the latitude of the St. Lawrence River, but the abundant snow covering then provided should not be lost sight of.
Its adaptation to the United States does not appear to have been proved yet, except in limited areas. In some of the Montana valleys good crops have been grown with much success in many of those western valleys, and even on the bench lands at the base of foothills. Nor would there seem to be any good reasons for supposing that good crops could not be grown in various parts of the United States where the soil is suitable.
In Canada, sainfoin has succeeded in Quebec. In trials made by the author at the Ontario Agricultural College at Guelph success was only partial, but the trials were limited. There would seem to be no good reasons why this plant should not succeed in many places in Canada where limestone soils prevail.
This plant is best adapted to dry soils calcareous in their composition and somewhat porous in character. This explains its great affinity for the chalk