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ALASKA HAWAII MIDWEST NORTHEAST PACIFIC NORTHWEST SOUTHEAST SOUTHWEST WEST Zone 1 Zone 2 Zone 3 Zone 4 Zone 5 Zone 6 Zone 7 Zone 8 Zone 9 Zone 10
What is this To help gardeners understand which plants will grow well for them, the entire USA has been segmented into ‘Plant Hardiness Zones’.

Vernal Alfalfa Seeds

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Vernal Alfalfa can be planted as a cover crop and will attract wildlife to the area. It is extremely drought-tolerant. Perennial. (Medicago sativa)

Advantages
Soil Enhancer
Soil Enhancer
Multiplies / Naturalizes
Multiplies / Naturalizes
Light Requirements
Full Sun
Full Sun
Mature Plant Size 15-36" tall
Bloom Time Late spring
SKU MES

Plant Information

Vernal Alfalfa prefers full sun and is very drought-tolerant. It blooms in late spring.
Associated SKUs
MES
MESLB (1 Pound)
MESLB5 (5 Pounds)
MESLB25 (25 Pounds)
MESLB50 (50 Pounds)
Common Name Vernal Alfalfa
Botanical Name Medicago sativa
Seed Life Cycle Perennials
Light Requirements Full Sun
Flower Color Purple
Mature Height 15-36" tall
Bloom Time Late spring
Ships As Seed
Coverage 1 lb covers 2,420 sq ft.
5 lbs covers 12,100 sq ft.
25 lbs covers 1.25 acres
50 lbs covers 2.75 acres
Seeds Per Pound 227,000
Soil Moisture Average, Well Draining
Soil Type Sandy Soil, Loamy Soil, Drought/Dry Soil
Advantages Soil Enhancer, Multiplies / Naturalizes
Additional Information Good for livestock and wildlife forage.
Is It Storable? Yes - You can store your seed in any cool (not freezing) dry place that is not subject to extreme temperature variations.
Non-GMO Yes
Neonicotinoid-Free Yes - Learn More
Ships to Hawaii, Alaska & Canada No

Planting & Care

Download our printable Grass Planting Guide, with Seeding Rates.

Create a Low-Maintenance Lawn or Add Nutrients to Your Soil with Grass and Groundcover Seeds.

Orchard Grass
Orchard Grass is a versatile variety that can be planted as a cover crop.

Getting Started: When to Plant

Planting Grass Seed in Fall or Spring: The ideal time to plant grass seed varies by hardiness zone, but is usually in the spring, once temperatures have reached a consistent 60 F and there is no more danger of frost. Grass can be planted through the end of July but no later. If you’re planting in the fall, wait until after there have been a few killing frosts so the seeds you plant will lie dormant until the spring.

Planting as a Cover Crop or Green Manure

If you're planting grasses, legumes or clover to replenish nutrients, suppress weeds or more, we recommend planting in early to mid fall. Let the grass grow until frost. Come spring, mow before it goes to seed and then till the soil. Wait 3-6 weeks before planting new crops.

Which plants are best for cover crops?

Clover, Peas, Vetch and Rye Grass.

Planting Rates: How Much Seed Do I Need?

Planting rates vary depending on the size of the seed. A larger seed (such as a Fescue) can be seeded at 10lbs/1,000 square feet. A smaller seed (such as a Bluegrass) can be seeded as low as 2lbs/1,000 square feet. To see planting rates for each individual variety, please view the chart on the back page of this guide.

If you’re still unsure of how much seed to use in your area, please give us a call at (877) 309-7333.

Preparing the Area for Planting

We recommend leveling the planting area as much as possible to eliminate high or low spots. Till the soil if possible about 4-6 inches deep, as the soil should be loose and clump free before planting. If your area is already somewhat bare and even, we recommend skipping the tilling process as it can promote new weed growth or unwanted grass growth. You can then add a product to help aerate your soil (such as LazyMan Liquid Gold™) to improve seed germination, but this is not necessary.

Step-By-Step Planting Instructions

Medium Red Clover
Medium Red Clover helps add nutrients to soil.
  1. After your soil is prepared, apply the seed at the recommended rate. See the back of the this guide for seeding rates. To make sure you're spreading the seed evenly, scatter 1/2 of the seed walking north to south and 1/2 of the seed walking east to west.
  2. If you have poor soil, you could lightly apply an organic fertilizer after seeding, although this is not a necessary step for strong growth.
  3. Many choose to cover their grass seed after planting, even though this is not necessary. If you do choose to cover your seed to help retain moisture and hold the seed in place, we recommend a maximum depth of 1/4”. You can cover the seed with topsoil, sterilized straw, or peat moss. Coated seeds such as Bermuda and Clover seeds should not be covered more than an 1/8” deep.
  4. Water gently and regularly, keeping the seeds moist until they begin to sprout. This could mean watering more than once a day if you’re having a dry spell. Once the seeds sprout, water deeply and less frequently. This helps to ensure a deep rooted, healthy lawn or meadow.
  5. Do not mow until your lawn is at the recommended height. This information can be found on our website at the specific product page. For most grasses, this is about 3-6 weeks after planting, but could be longer depending on growing conditions. Remember to be gentle when mowing the first few times — the seedlings will be somewhat tender.
  6. After mowing several times, you can apply an organic fertilizer to promote strong growth, but this is not a necessary step.

It may take weeks or even a month for the seeds to grow. Be patient. If you have any questions about germination time or planting, please don’t hesitate to call us at (877) 309-7333.

Further Reading:

Shipping

Most orders ship within 48 hours or less.

As soon as your order is placed you will receive a confirmation email. You will receive a second email the day your order ships telling you how it has been sent. Orders for in-season products ship within 48 hours or less. Depending upon your order date, we may hold your shipment to combine it with other products on your order, if applicable. See our shipping information page for approximate ship dates and more detailed information. If you need express shipping or have any questions, please call Customer Service toll-free at (877) 309-7333 or contact us by email.

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Reviewsby PowerReviews

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
American MeadowsVernal Alfalfa Seeds
 
2.3

(based on 3 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

33%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

No Pros

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

No Best Uses
    • Primary use:
    • Personal (3)

Reviewed by 3 customers

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5.0

Super easy to germinate and grow

By 

from Norcal Hot and Dry Inland

About Me Avid Gardener

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Accurate Instructions
  • Healthy

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about American Meadows Vernal Alfalfa Seeds:

      I wanted to grow my own alfalfa for my roses, veggies and other plants since it helps growth and yields. I saw the other reviews here, but had good luck with some other seeds from American Meadows (Lacy Phacelia), so I thought I would take the chance. I had absolutely no trouble getting these seeds to grow. I really didn't do much work at all. Sprinkled them around, lightly covered, then let the rain water them in for me. In my area it gets very hot so I germinated them in January. No problem whatsoever! I actually had way more sprout than I expected! I highly recommend these seeds. Especially for those inland in California, since that is my climate.

      • Primary use:
      • Personal

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      1.0

      Could not get this alfalfa to grow

      By 

      from Idaho

      About Me Avid Gardener

      See all my reviews

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

        Cons

        • Difficult To Use

        Best Uses

        • Outdoors

        Comments about American Meadows Vernal Alfalfa Seeds:

        Did not get this alfalfa to grow in field conditions that was turned over and grew other grass. Disappointed that it did not grow.

        • Primary use:
        • Personal

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        1.0

        Poor

        By 

        from Castleton Vt.

        About Me Master Gardener

        Verified Reviewer

        Comments about American Meadows Vernal Alfalfa Seeds:

        Very disappointed with this seed. Did not germinate.

        • Primary use:
        • Personal

        Displaying reviews 1-3

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        Q & A

        Plant With These:

        USDA Hardiness Planting Zones

        To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.

        • If the coldest winter temperature expected in your area is -15°F (zone 5) then any plants rated zones 3-5 will survive the winter temperatures in your area.
        • If you live in very warm winter areas (zones 9-11) plants with zones 3-4 ratings are not recommended. The lack of freezing winter temperatures do not provide a time for winter dormancy (rest).

        Find Your Planting Zone:

        Enter your Zip Code to find your USDA Planting Zone

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