Melilotus officinalis seed Melilot

 

This biennial plant is 2 to 4 feet high at maturity and blooms in spring and summer. Flowers are yellow. Its characteristic sweet odor, intensified by drying, is derived from coumarin.

Sweet Clover contains coumarin that converts to dicoumarol (a powerful anticoagulant toxin) when the plant becomes mouldy. This can lead to bleeding diseases (internal hemorrhaging) and death in cattle. Consequently, hay containing the plant must be properly dried and cured, especially in wet environments. In the chemical industry dicoumarol is extracted from the plant to produce rodenticide.

Propagation: Germination rate of this species is very good. Sow directly in prepared garden bed or growing area.