E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Trifolium depauperatum Desv.
balloon sack clover (cowbag clover; poverty clover)
Fabaceae (Pea family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jeremy Gatten  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #29435)

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Distribution of Trifolium depauperatum
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Trifolium depauperatum var. depauperatum

Species Information

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Annual herb from a taproot; stems several, decumbent to ascending, 5-40 cm long, branching, glabrous or sparsely glandular-hairy.
Alternate, palmately compound; leaflets 3, narrowly wedge- to egg-shaped, the margins finely toothed, the tips squared-off or notched, 5-20 mm long; stipules papery, 5-10 mm long, the tips long-pointed.
Inflorescence a dense, globe-shaped, long-stalked, axillary or terminal head of 2 to 15 pea-like flow ers, the heads 5-15 mm wide, set in small involucres; corollas white to pinkish-purple but fading to brown, 3-11 mm long, the banner inflated; involucres glabrous, reduced and entire but sometimes 5- to 7-lobed; calyces funnel-shaped, membranous, glabrous, to 1/2 as long as the corollas, the tube 5- to 6-veined, the teeth lanceolate, bristle-tipped.
Pods, egg-shaped, with or without short stalks; seeds 1 to 5.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Vernally wet to moist grassy sites in the lowland zone; infrequent on SE Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands; S to CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References