The plant is native to western North America from British Columbia to California, as well as towestern South America in Peru and Chile. It is a common plant of many types of habitat, including coastal prairie and mixed evergreen forest,. 
Trifolium depauperatum is a small annual herb growing upright or decumbent in form. The leaves are made up of oval leaflets up to 2 centimeters long which are smooth, toothed, lobed, or blunt-tipped. The inflorescence is a head of flowers up to 1.5 centimeters long. The flower has a pinkish purple white-tipped corolla up to a centimeter long. It becomes inflated as the fruit developed.
Trifolium depauperatum has several varieties, which can include:
- Trifolium depauperatum var. amplectens — Balloon sack clover, Pale bladder clover. 
- Trifolium depauperatum var. depauperatum — Cowbag clover.
- Trifolium depauperatum var. hydrophilum
- Trifolium depauperatum var. truncatum — Dwarf sack clover. 
- "Trifolium depauperatum". Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA. Retrieved 15 December 2015.
- "BSBI List 2007". Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-02-25. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
- Calflora: Trifolium depauperatum
- Calflora: Trifolium depauperatum var. amplectens
- Calflora: Trifolium depauperatum var. depauperatum
- Calflora: Trifolium depauperatum var. truncatum
- Calflora Database: Trifolium depauperatum (Cowbag clover, Dwarf sack clover, Pale sack clover)
- Jepson Manual eFlora (TJM2) treatment of Trifolium depauperatum
- GRIN Species Profile
- UC CalPhotos gallery: Trifolium depauperatum
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