Trifolium medium

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaFabaceaeTrifoliumTrifolium medium


A rhizomatous perennial herb, mostly found in neutral grasslands on heavy soils, although it also occurs in hedgerows and on wood edges, and in ruderal habitats such as quarry spoil-heaps and railway banks. In upland areas it is also found on rocky streamsides and in tall-herb communities on rock ledges, and on heaths in Ireland. Generally lowland, but reaching 610 m on Helvellyn (Cumberland).



World Distribution

Eurosiberian Boreo-temperate element; widely naturalised outside its native range.

© Shannon, P

Broad Habitats

Neutral grassland (includes coarse Arrhenatherum grassland)

Light (Ellenberg): 7

Moisture (Ellenberg): 4

Reaction (Ellenberg): 6

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 4


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.4

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.8

Annual Precipitation (mm): 1008

Life form information

Height (cm): 45

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Little or no vegetative spread

Distribution information

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 2050

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 208

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 2

Atlas Change Index: -0.53

Weighted Changed Factor: 10

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


Distribution information

JNCC Designations


PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.

Atlas text references

Atlas (105c)
Grime JP, Hodgson JG, Hunt R
1988.  Comparative Plant Ecology.
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Meusel H, Jäger E, Weinert E
1965.  Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.