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Plant Database

Search for native plants by scientific name, common name or family. If you are not sure what you are looking for, try the Combination Search or our Recommended Species lists.

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Ranunculus acris (Common buttercup)
Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia

Ranunculus acris

Ranunculus acris L.

Common Buttercup, Tall buttercup

Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)


USDA Symbol: RAAC3

USDA Native Status: L48 (NI), AK (I), CAN (I), GL (N?), SPM (I)

A tall, erect, hairy, branching plant with glossy yellow flowers.

This European introduction is one of our tallest and most common Buttercups. It thrives best in moist sites. The distinctive, shiny, waxy texture of Buttercup petals is caused by a special layer of cells just beneath the surface cells. As the species name implies, the juice from stems and leaves is acrid, discouraging browsing animals, and favoring the spread of the plant.


From the Image Gallery

2 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb

Bloom Information

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


USA: AK , AL , CA , CT , DC , DE , GA , IA , ID , IL , IN , KS , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , MT , NC , ND , NH , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV , WY
Native Distribution: Alaska south to northwestern California and east across Canada and northern United States.
Native Habitat: Old fields, meadows, disturbed areas.

National Wetland Indicator Status

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


Record Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff

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