History and economic importance. Persian clover or shaftal (Trifolium rcsupinannn L.) belongs to the Lcguminosac family. The shaftal plant is native to South Asia. In Europe, it was cultivated as an ornamental plant for many years. After its establishment as a fodder crop its cultivation spread to South America, West Germany Australia, and Central Asia. Now it occupies a significant position as a fodder crop in Egypt and Iran. In Pakistan, shaftal is also a relatively new fodder crop. It appears to have been introduced earlier than bereem, perhaps around 1910-15 in the Lahore region. Later it moved to the north western, cold irrigated or heavy rainfall areas of the country.