CLARKSVILLE — Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist and local resident Wade Hall reports that he recently discovered a patch of Running Buffalo Clover in the Clarksville area.
He said this clover is an endangered species of perennial clover native to the eastern and midwestern United States. Buffalo, which once inhabited Ohio, ate the clover and helped to disperse the plant’s seeds.
“This clover was thought to be extinct from 1940 to 1985 until two populations were discovered in West Virginia,” he said. “Today, this clover exists in Ohio, West Virginia, Indiana and Missouri. In Ohio, there are only a few places where Running Buffalo Clover exists.
“I have been working with the ODNR Division of Natural Areas and Preserves’ Chief Botanist to document the number of plants and the size of the population. He was excited to learn about this new population and is currently writing a paper on the status of Running Buffalo Clover in Ohio.
“As an Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist, you are trained to observe nature,” added Hall. “When I came across this patch of white clover it didn’t look like all the white clover that I had seen. Most of that clover is Dutch White Clover which is a non-native introduced from Europe.”