Observations on environmental and genotypic influences on the overwintering of white clover.
Measurements were made during the winter of 1977/78 at the Welsh Plant Breeding Station of changes of leaf, stolon and root biomass, stolon length and reserve carbohydrate of S100, S84, Menna and Olwen. Differences due to clover cultivars were large. The characteristics of S184 allowed it to overwinter and enter spring with more stolon and leaf than the other cultivars. Olwen showed some increase in stolon biomass but declined markedly in late winter. Early spring growth was positively related to the weight of stolon which overwintered. It is concluded that genotypic differences and management effects on the function of the stolon as a photosynthetic or storage organ during winter are important factors determining the survival and production of white clover in Britain.