In NSW, subterranean clover (sub clover) species are grown on the Northern, Central and Southern Tablelands and Slopes, the Riverina and in coastal areas. Sub clover originated in the Mediterranean region, parts of western Europe, southern England and Ireland and is the most important annual pasture legume sown in southern Australia.
The potential of sub clover to provide nutritious feed for livestock and improve soil fertility was first recognised early this century by AW Howard in South Australia. During the 1950s, sub clover was widely adopted by farmers as the basis for improved pastures and leys in southern Australia. It is now grown on over 7.7 million hectares of agricultural land in New South Wales, from areas receiving as little as 375 mm average annual rainfall in the south of the state, to those receiving more than 1000 mm in the north.