White Prairie-cloverDalea candida Michx. ex Willd.
This fall-blooming prairie perennial is pollinated by many insects including flies, bees, and wasps. It is often browsed by livestock, deer, elk, and some game birds, while seeds are eaten by other bird species. Indigenous people have also used it for food and medicinal purposes. Because it can help restore nitrogen to the soil, White Prairie-clover can be important for prairie restoration or land reclamation projects.
Canadian Rarity Status:
Plants have stems that grow in small clumps that are 20-100 cm tall. Its bright green, alternate leaves are divided into 5-9 narrow leaflets with dotted undersides. Tiny white flowers occur in a dense cylinder-shaped spike, blooming from the bottom up. Each flower has one banner petal, and four smaller petals (wings and keels). The base of these is surrounded by a 5-toothed, tube-shaped calyx, and a single v-shaped bract. The fruit is a thin walled pod containing a single kidney-shaped seed.
Seeds and/or plants are often available from greenhouses and seed supply companies specializing in native plants. Plants are easily grown from seed.
- Fescue Prairie
- Mixed Grass Prairie
- Open Woodlands
- Full Sun
- Blow Flies (Calliphoridae)
- Bumble, Honey, and other Bees (Apidae (Subfamily Apinae))
- Crabronid Wasps (Crabronidae)
- Flower Flies (Syrphidae)
- Gossamer-winged Butterflies (Lycaenidae)
- Leafcutter and Mason Bees (Megachilidae)
- Parasitic Flies (Tachinidae)
- Skippers (Hesperiidae)
- Sphinx and Hawk Moths (Sphingidae)
- Sweat Bees, Halictid Bees and other Bees (Halictidae)
- Thick-headed Flies (Conopidae)
- Yellow-faced Bees (Colletidae)