Name to Watch: Clover

CloverClover has popped up everywhere–on baby name lists. This rare girl name doesn’t seem like it will be rare for long.

After seeing Clover in a few places, one of them being Waltzing More Than Matilda’s post on Australian Olympians, and noting 2500+ keyword search results on Nameberry for “Clover” (at time of writing), I decided to add it to UBN’s annual Watch List Report.

There were 140 newborn girls named Clover last year. This puts the name about three to five years from possibly reaching the top 1000 list. For girls, names usually reach the top 1000 once they have hit over 250 births (that number is lower for boys at between 196-197).

No one can be sure if Clover’s numbers will keep growing, but if they grow at the present rate, there’s a good chance we will see it chart sooner than later. Here are Clover’s birth numbers for the past decade:

Year # Newborn Girls
2002 24
2003 12
2004 46
2005 55
2006 66
2007 77
2008 127
2009 131
2010 99
2011 109
2012 140


There were a couple of years where the births dropped a little (2003 & 2010), but the overall trend is upwards. Over the past decade, the name’s usage increased nearly six-fold.

Due to Clover’s many charming qualities, I feel its numbers will continue to grow. Besides complementing high-ranking names like Willow (#171 and steadily climbing), Clover has the added allure of symbolism and folklore.

To “be in clover” means to live a carefree life of prosperity. The shamrock is associated with Ireland and St. Patrick’s Day. I’ve told my daughter about lucky four-leaf clovers, and now she likes to search for them, just like I did when I was six. (She hasn’t found one yet.)

Potential breakout names like Clover are added to the Watch List Report. Potential breakout names aren’t the only names included in the report. Some Watch List names have already made their mark, and seem to be headed for the mainstream, such as Atticus from last year’s Watch List. Other names are long-shots, names that are rare and not discussed often, but feel very current, such as Ferdinand from last year.

Every year after the U.S. Social Security Administration releases the top 1000 baby names in May, the UBN Watch Report gets updated. The second annual Watch List Report is now available.

To get your free copy, and get updates from UBN, submit your email address below.

*By submitting your email address below you will also automatically get next year’s Watch List Report unless you choose to unsubscribe before then.

Photo credit


  1. Wasn’t one of the tributes on the Hunger Games named Clover?

  2. This name is so cute – it’s not only lucky, but it has the word “love” in it. But then, I’ve had a name crush on it ever since I read “What Katy Did”.

  3. I named my daughter Clover Mildred (16 months now). She’s my 7th child–lucky number seven. I would love to see it get more popular so it would feel more like an acceptable name and less like “a name for a bunny” as the haters like to say.


  1. […] 1000 on the Social Security list within the next year or two. This places Katniss with Blythe and Clover, other names on the UBN Watch List report. All three names are outside the top 1000, but due to pop […]

Speak Your Mind