Appalachia Appalachia Through My Eyes

Appalachia Through My Eyes – 4 Leaf Clovers


4 leaf clovers

Have you ever looked for 4 leaf clovers out in the grass? I have never ever found one-not once. The truth is I probably never had the patience to keep looking. After a few quick glances I’d give up the clover looking in favor of pulling daisies, looking for grasshoppers, or weaving crowns from the grasses.

Even though I never found one-I am closely related to the Queen of 4 Leaf Clovers-she’s my sister-n-law. I swear-as long as I’ve known that girl-and it’s been a long time-she can find a 4 leaf clover quicker than you can say scat.

Her magic ability might have been one more reason for me to be jealous of her when we were in elementary school-she was pretty-super smart-every teacher’s pet-not shy at all (like me)-and she could magically call forth 4 leaf clovers. But she was also sweet as pie-so there went the jealous thing.

She can still find them too. A few years ago one of the girls needed a 4 leaf clover for some kind of school project. I said “Go down to Granny’s yard and I’ll bet you’ll find one there.” She came back disheartened and tired of looking for a “stupid 4 leaf clover”. I sent her down to Aunt Kim’s and I swear she was back in no time with not one-but three 4 leaf clovers.

Ever find a 4 leaf clover?


Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.


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  • Reply
    March 24, 2012 at 6:53 am

    I’m not lucky either at finding 4-leaf clovers. Don’t remember ever finding one.
    Weaving crowns from grasses? Don’t think I’ve heard of that either.

  • Reply
    March 21, 2012 at 9:29 pm

    Excuse my absence for a few days. I’ve had the virus that’s creeping here abouts, and it’s a bad’un…lasts most of a week. Yuck!
    When we were school children, our mother use to give us a penny a piece for each for leaf clover we found. She’d keep them in a little crystal-like vase on the window sill. When we were little, we just thought she liked ’em. In truth, what she probably liked was the quiet in the house while we searched for them outdoors. ;o) Because of that, we found probably in the hundreds and most of us now have the knack of finding them as we walk through the yard or at the park or down a sidewalk. They only grow in certain clover, so if you watch for that, you’ll have more luck finding them.
    God bless.

  • Reply
    Missy Steiger
    March 18, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    I was good at finding them as a child but haven’t looked for years.

  • Reply
    Bill Dotson
    March 18, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    Never could find one, have an older brother that could always find more than one just like your sister-in-law oh well just one of those things I guess.

  • Reply
    Wayne Newton
    March 18, 2012 at 10:40 am

    Tipper, in my growing-up-years, a time when, if we went, we walked, just about everywhere, I never found a single one.
    In the Wiregrass Country of that day, when you looked down as you walked, you would likely see sandy topsoil (in the plowed fields), or wiregrass, gall berry and palmetto, with all the ubiquitous berries and nuts (in the forests and woodlands) of which we were so fond.
    I don’t recall ever finding one as a boy, or through the years as a grownup, but when I married Cathy, I met the World Champion Four-Leaf-Finder; Bonnie McCollum!
    Seldom did she come inside their house, without at least one. During all the years we lived far away, she enclosed many of them in the letters to Cathy.
    In the albums of her letters to Cathy, are found many, many four leaf clovers.
    In the anthology we have put together of her letters, are several pictures of clovers.
    Thanks for the memories.

  • Reply
    susie swanson
    March 18, 2012 at 10:16 am

    I’m with you Tipper, I’ve never in my life found one but all my mama had to do was walk through the grass and pick them

  • Reply
    March 18, 2012 at 9:23 am

    I have never found a 4-leaf clover either. I have tried and tried, but they hide when I start looking! I have been with friends who were also looking and they would just go, ‘OH! here is one, here is another, etc” and we would be looking in the exact same place!

  • Reply
    Janet Smart
    March 17, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    Yes, I have found quite a few in my time. My grandmother was the best at finding them, though. We’d sit in the yard under the weeping willow tree and hunt for them together.

  • Reply
    Sue Crane
    March 17, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    I’m like you, Tipper, too impatient to keep looking — loved making clover chains though. When I flew home today there were two rocks in my suitcase – per request of grandson 🙂

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 9:13 pm

    As a child in the mountains of western Oregon, we had a few clover patches in our yard. I would lay on my stomach looking for 4-leaf clovers. I never found any. When I was a teenager visiting my Mamaw Dillard in Robbinsville, she told me to go in the back yard to see if I could find any 4-leaf clovers. I was thinking, I’ve looked before when they lived on Mountain Creek, this was a new place so I gave it a try. I found three 4-leaf clovers. I went in and showed her and she had a big smile on her face. I wonder if she had looked for some, found them, then told me to look for them, I’ll never know. I know I still have them somewhere. I haven’t found any since, in OR, NC, or WA where I now live, guess I’m not looking in the right places or for the right type of clover.

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    I was walking back from the barn earlier today and came upon a thick patch of clover. I just had to stop and look. My Brother-In-Law was always amazed how easily I could spot a four-leaf clover. I have found hundreds in my lifetime.
    My parents were moving us to another county when I was about six years old. I was so sad and crawled under the porch to cry. I found a cheap, plastic four leaf clover. Mom pinned it to her dresses and wore it for years. When she died, we found it in her jewelry box. I have it now and wouldn’t trade it to one made of gold.

  • Reply
    Barb Wright
    March 17, 2012 at 7:48 pm

    Ah Ha!! Something I can do well! I have literally 100’s of these in all of my books. I can find a 4 leaf clover before most can say the could my grandpa. I am not just happens. I always tell folks that I think because it is an “odd shape”,that I think it catches my eye. Who knows? By the way,the last one I found last summer is on the wall just to the left of my computer(which is on the end kitchen wall),because my grandson was with me at the time. Anybody want one? As soon as the grass grows in northern PA,I’ll be happy to oblige!! Really!!!

  • Reply
    Gary Powell
    March 17, 2012 at 6:20 pm

    I found the biggest one I ever found this morning. It was in some clover that I had sowed with some other seed along my driveway. I press them in a book until they dry and usually just leave them there. I guess someone will find a treasure trove some day.

  • Reply
    Bill Burnett
    March 17, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    I have seldom found four leaf clovers but one of my Paternal Grandmothers could find them anywhere until after she was 100 years old, I think she could have found them in a Kudzu Patch. Personally I’ve always wondered why four leaf clovers and Rabbit’s feet were sopposed to be lucky, the clovers get plucked and the Rabbits had four feet which never seemed to help them since so many were turned into key chains. Now if I find a walking rock like Miss Cindy spotted I’ll bring it in right off, that would really be unique. (Just Joshing Miss Cindy).

  • Reply
    Madge @ The View From Right Here
    March 17, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    Yes Tipper, I find them almost every time I look… so sorry you haven’t… Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

  • Reply
    Tim Cuthbertson
    March 17, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    I can’t find them, either, but when my oldest son was about 10, there was a girl at his school who said she had no trouble at all finding them. Sure enough, she looked at a large, thick patch and within about 10 seconds had found three 4-leaf shamrocks. Apparently, it was some special ability.

  • Reply
    Darlene LaRoche
    March 17, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    Never had much interst in finding 4-leaf clovers, but I used to enjoy looking for arrow heads and old bottles back in my younger days…

  • Reply
    Joyce M
    March 17, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    I acually found 2 this afternoon after it rained…I also am one of those blessed in finding the “4’s” I love it!! When I was little I kept mine in the “S” encyclopedia. Hundreds, don’t know what happened to it so if anyone comes across an old “S” encyclopedia look for the clovers in it…..hahaha

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 3:16 pm

    Never had much luck looking for four leaf clovers. Like Miss Cindy, I love seeking out odd rocks, bits of china, rusty metal,
    seashells, beach glass etc. and wondering where they originated from. Best finds-a piece of brown transfer ware, an old aggie and a rock with what looks like coral in it–all found in the backyard.

  • Reply
    Jen Y
    March 17, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    My mom would share the story with me of the time they were looking at the house they bought the yr I was born. She sat on the edge of the porch to talk & found seven 4 leaf clovers while sitting there! She was finding them all the time.
    I’ve found a few here at my house but I haven’t looked for any in yrs. I used to look with my son when he was little.

  • Reply
    Ron Banks
    March 17, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    My wife has an eye for finding them. She can spot one in no time. I probably have found five in my life! Happy St. Paddy’s Day to all! Anybody having corned beef and cabbage?
    Ron Banks

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Yes, I find one now and then, and like a previous comment said, we used to make chains from the blossoms.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    March 17, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Miss Cindy, Like you I look for rocks. I happen to own an old abandoned mica mine in Swain County. We used to find garnets and tiny rubies along with the mica. There were also veins of pure white crumbly rock. I think it was kaolin, but I’m not sure.
    I also gathered up some creek and field rocks from my old home place and brought them here to Burke County. Someday in the far future a geologist is going to analyze them and determine that, since humans in the 20th century were not capable of transporting such objects over such vast distances, they were flung there by an interplanetary collision. I’ll be somewhere watching, laughing, knowing that the immense explosion was merely a 1998 Suburu Outback.

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    March 17, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    I have looked for and found 4-leaf clovers in my early lifetime, but not in lots of years.
    I really like the name of the group, Burnt Toast and Cracklings. Sounds like a fun group and the name sounds like a good breakfast with some grits and eggs.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    March 17, 2012 at 12:59 pm

    Tipper—I’ve found literally thousands of them, although for some strange reason their discovery has not led to fortune (at least in terms of material wealth). In addition to four-leaf clovers I’ve found them with five, six, and in one case seven leaves. My Aunt Emma taught me the key to finding them when I was a boy. Look at each individual clover rather than at the whole patch. Also, if you find one four-leaf clover in a place you can almost bet there will be many more. For some reason they come in bunches, and not all clover plants seem to have them.
    I think the fact that I spent many a carefree hour hunting golf balls as a kid might have helped, and I have a good eye for morel mushrooms as well. In fact, we’ve been so warm that morels should be popping about the next rain we have, so I’ve got to go to my honey hole (property we own where I do much of my hunting) and start gandering around.
    Loved the lead music today—ideally suited to the occasion.
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    Half Irish
    March 17, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    My Dad had an eye for picking 4 leaf clovers and would pick them for his Irish sweetheart (my Mom). They just stand out to certain people. Not me though, I’ve never found one. Mom said it helps to be full of Blarney.

  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    March 17, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    I’m like your SIL–usually can find one or several. We used to make long chains out of the clover blossoms.
    The clover blooms were hazardous for our bare feet–honeybees were abundant & so were stung feet! It would swell the bottom of our feet flat & itch like crazy.
    The bee’s stinger would detach & stay stuck in our feet till Mama got it out. She put what was called Spirits of Ammonia on the sting–smelled terrible so at least it distracted us from the sting.

  • Reply
    Ethelene Dyer Jones
    March 17, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    To all you who can trace your roots back to hardy Irish immigrants, Happy St. Patrick’s Day. And to those who can’t, Happy St. Patrick’s Day, anyway. Four-leaf clovers are indeed hard to find, but we can pray for each other the desires of this wonderful “Irish Blessing.” You’ll find it written different ways, but this is my favorite:
    “May the road rise to meet you;
    May the wind be always at your back;
    May the sun shine warmly on your face,
    May the rains fall softly on your fields,
    And until we meet again,
    May God hold you in the palm of His hand.” Amen.

  • Reply
    Mary Shipman
    March 17, 2012 at 11:48 am

    I’ve found a few, I have a daughter that like your sister in law can almost always find them. Often in a spot I just lookes through. 🙂 She’s good like that!

  • Reply
    dolores barton
    March 17, 2012 at 11:41 am

    As a child, I always searched for the lucky 4-leaf clover. I didn’t always find one, but once I did I would put it between two pieces of plastic. I used to carry one for many years in my wallet. I was always fascinated by them. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 11:30 am

    My Mom was the same way, she could just look down and say well there’s another one, I’d sit for hours looking! Glad to know I’m not alone. Happy St. Paddy’s day!!

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 11:29 am

    As a child after many times trying I finally found one and have not been able to ever do it again—don’t know if it is lack of patience or just no luck—-wishing you and yours and all the blind pig bloggers a happy day of wearin’the green.

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 11:27 am

    used to spend HOURS when we were kids looking for a four leaf clover- I do not remember ever finding one, no matter how hopeful I always was-

  • Reply
    Pat in east TN
    March 17, 2012 at 11:17 am

    I used to try, but had no luck. I did have a friend who used to find them though without even trying. She’d just look down and there one would be. Ugh!

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 11:15 am

    So do four-leafed clovers bring good luck – or is it that good things happen to those who persevere. Me? Never found one in my life.

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 10:54 am

    Some years ago I was at my daughter’s in-laws house and found about 15 of them, all in one patch. I brought them home and put them in a book to press them. Maybe one day I’ll remember which book it was! And Tim..I know about those honeybees. Used to get stung between my toes at least once a summer. And each time was the worst!

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    March 17, 2012 at 9:47 am

    I have found a few but not many. Like you, I don’t have the patience for it.
    Now ask me about finding garnets on the creek bank and I can claim to be an expert there. I used to find those pretty little red rocks by the fist full. Guess it’s because I’ve always had an affinity for rocks…all kinds of rocks. I like big rocks and I like little rocks. In fact I have a rock sitting on the kitchen counter right now. I found it walking. I watched it for weeks. Every time I walked by it it beckoned to me to pick it up and take it home.
    There are rocks all over my yard that have beckoned to me at some time in the past. I used to keep them in jars but I got tired of folks coming to visit and asking why I have a jar of rocks sitting on my shelf. I finally took all my jars outside and added them to my landscape….the one on my counter, well, he’ll stay in a little longer then go to my outside collection.
    Guess Kim has a clover affinity!

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 9:34 am

    Yes, in my younger days, i went looking for them and found several. Remember how exciting it was and thought they were going to bring me all kinds of good luck.

  • Reply
    Rick Kratzke
    March 17, 2012 at 8:34 am

    That is ok Tipper, I have never found one either.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    March 17, 2012 at 8:31 am

    4 leaf clovers are like ginseng. They can hide from most people. If you do find one, it’s is a stupid one or a daredevil that made its last flirt with disaster. There are a rare few people that are smarter than clover and find them everywhere. Me? I find the dumb ones now and then.

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 8:17 am

    I have not, but my kids have! I don’t have the patience…

  • Reply
    March 17, 2012 at 8:13 am

    never found one, but that could be because i never looked for one. i had a cousin in school like your sister in law, and i was a tad jealous.

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    March 17, 2012 at 7:41 am

    I love looking for 4 leaf clovers…The best one is when you’re just walking thru the grass and one just pops up in a patch of clover…I think that is the luckiest one….
    I wish I could get down on all fours and look for them like I used to…It is very important to sit down and look for 4 leaf clovers..before you know it you are seeing other things, the warm sun, and sounds of the outdoors relaxes the keep looking Tipper…and take a rest..
    Thanks for a wonderful post..
    “Happy St.Patrick”s Day”…with this Irish Blessing..
    “May you always walk in sunshine. May you never want for more. May Irish angels rest their wings right beside your door.”

  • Reply
    Tim Mc
    March 17, 2012 at 7:40 am

    Yep, use to as kids, I barely can see to tie my shoes know. Couldn’t find one if my life depended on it. But as kids we use to find them all the time, our yard back then was full of clover, had to be careful if you had no shoes on because those honey bees didn’t like it when you stepped on them, if you know what I mean…

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