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Synesthesia Helps Me Find Four Leaf Clovers

4 Jun 2012 — Updated 17 Jan 2023

Four-leaf clovers standing out as a different color

I find four-leaf clovers quite a lot.

I have several hundred of them. I even have a few five-leaf clovers and a couple of sixers!

I have them pressed in books and tucked away in various places around the house.

Why do I find so many, I hear you ask?

Well, I have a theory about this...

Normally when I spot a four or five-leaf clover it's not that I'm searching for them. They just jump out at me - almost like I catch them move as I walk by. My eye is drawn right to its exact spot in the clover patch.

I'm sure my synesthesia is at work here. (Read my synesthesia story)

When I glance across a clover patch, any clover that doesn't have three leaves is a different shape. My brain notices this difference and it immediately stands out from the others.

This is nicely illustrated by this Wikipedia diagram:

Synaesthesia test

Left is how a normal person sees the shapes. Right is how synesthetes may see the shapes, notice how the reversed shapes are obvious due to their different color.

For me, four-leaf clovers are a different shape so they stand out in a clover patch very much like this. Unlike letters and numbers, however, I don't get a sense of color, it's more like a sense of movement.

So they do jump out at me!

It's common for synesthetes with grapheme-color synesthesia to find 4-leaf clovers more easily. The cross-wiring of senses in a synesthete brain causes 4-leaf shapes to appear a different color to the 3-leaf variety, so they stand out. Ordinary people only see a patch of homogeneous green leaves.

Amber, aka The Woodland Elf is another artist with synesthesia who finds four-leaf clovers.

Do you have synesthesia? Do you find four-leaf clovers? Let me know.

Can you spot 4 leaf clovers?

Let's play a little synesthesia game! ;)

I started taking pictures of four-leaf clovers before I picked them (or instead of picking them) just to see if other people could spot them as easily as I.

Give it a try.

How many four-leaf clovers can you see in the following photos?

Four-leaf clover photo 15
Let's start out easy.
Four-leaf clover photo 01
Four-leaf clover photo 02
Four-leaf clover photo 04
Four-leaf clover photo 05
Four-leaf clover photo 06
Four-leaf clover photo 07
Four-leaf clover photo 08
Four-leaf clover photo 09
Four-leaf clover photo 10
Four-leaf clover photo 11
Four-leaf clover photo 12
Four-leaf clover photo 13
Four-leaf clover photo 14

Did you find any?

Hint: There are a few five-leaf clovers in some of the pictures too. =)

Picked four-leaf clover
Got ya!
Four-leaf clovers in a flower press

I keep a lot of my clovers in a flower press I built that is shaped like a flower.

So do four-leaf clovers make you lucky?

I don't know... ;)

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