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Argentina anserina (Silverweed cinquefoil)
Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia

Argentina anserina

Argentina anserina (L.) Rydb.

Silverweed cinquefoil, Common silverweed, Silverweed, Goosefoot

Rosaceae (Rose Family)

Synonym(s): Argentina anserina var. concolor, Argentina argentea, Potentilla anserina, Potentilla anserina ssp. anserina, Potentilla anserina var. concolor, Potentilla anserina var. sericea, Potentilla anserina var. yukonensis, Potentilla egedii ssp. yukonensis, Potentilla yukonensis

USDA Symbol: aran7

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N), SPM (N)

A low, 6-9 in. perennial that sends up flowers and leaves on separate stalks. Solitary, 1 in., five-petaled, yellow flowers are held on slender stems above basal tufts of pinnate, silvery foliage.

This species, also occurring in Eurasia, has recently been moved from the genus Potentilla to the genus Argentina because of the solitary flower at the tip of the stalk. The Pacific Silverweed (Argentina anserina ssp. pacifica) grows along the Pacific Coast from Alaska to southern California; the runners and stalks of its leaves lack hairs or have a few hairs that lie flat. In ancient times Silverweed was grown for food and medicine. The cooked root is purported to have the flavor of parsnips or sweet potatoes. An extract from the root has also been used to tan leather. Attractive foliage; edible roots. Raw, boiled or roasted, the spring roots have been likened to parsnips, chestnuts and sweet potatoes. Medicinally, Common silverweed was used mainly as an astringent in gargles, washes and teas for reducing inflammation and stopping bleeding of the digestive tract, kidneys and skin. (Kershaw)

 

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Root Type: Tap
Leaf Complexity: Pinnate
Leaf Shape: Obovate
Leaf: Whitish on surface
Flower:
Fruit:
Size Class: 0-1 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep

Distribution

USA: AK , AZ , CA , CO , CT , IA , ID , IL , IN , MA , ME , MI , MN , MT , ND , NE , NH , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , SD , TN , UT , VT , WA , WI , WY
Canada: NB , NS , ON , PE
Native Distribution: Transcontinental Canada, s. to coastal New England, Great Lakes, IA, western mts. & CA
Native Habitat: Wet Meadow, Prairie, Field, Riparian, Salt Water Shorelines

Growing Conditions

Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
CaCO3 Tolerance: Medium
Soil Description: Moist loams.
Conditions Comments: Used for erosion control. Silverweed spreads by sending runners from the parent in several directions. These develop roots at nodes to form new plants.

Benefit

Use Food: Attractive foliage; edible roots. Raw, boiled or roasted, the spring roots have been likened to parsnips, chestnuts and sweet potatoes.
Use Medicinal: Medicinally, common silverweed was used mainly as an astringent in gargles, washes and teas for reducing inflammation.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Butterflies

Propagation

Description: The plant is so easily reproduced by stolons that it is not worth the trouble to grow from seed. Use stolon internode cuttings or separate rooted plantlets from parent plants in spring or summer.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

National Wetland Indicator Status

Region:AGCPAKAWCBEMPGPHIMWNCNEWMVE
Status: OBL FACW OBL OBL FACW FACW FACW OBL
This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

Additional resources

USDA: Find Argentina anserina in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Argentina anserina in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Argentina anserina

Metadata

Record Last Modified: 2014-03-28
Research By: TWC Staff

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