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Fig Buttercup Ficaria verna

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
fye-KAIR-ee-uh VER-nuh
This plant is an invasive species in North Carolina
Description

Lesser celandine is in the Ranunculaceae family. It was introduced into North America and has naturalized in 19 states in the Northeast, the Pacific Northwest, and eastern Canada. In wild areas, plants  compete with native plants and wildflowers forming large, dense vigrous colonies that sometimes cover several acres of land. 

Flowers are easy to spot in the early spring.  After flowering, the plant foliage dies back by early summer as the plants go dormant.  Bulblets on above ground stems and underground tubers are the primary methods of propagation. Tubers resemble figs, hence the Latin name.  The spread of bulblets and tubers can be accelerated by such factors as animal digging and downstream flooding.

This plant was formally known as Ranunculus ficaria.

Insect, Disease, and Other Problems: No serious insect or disease problems. Slugs and snails may appear. When planted in a garden, plants tend to spread invasively into adjacent areas. Exercise caution in planting this perennial in the landscape. Some cultivars are reportedly less aggressive.

May be confused with: Caltha palustris and Geum radiatum

Consider Planting: Geum radiatum which is less invasive.

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#invasive#weed#weedy#naturalizes
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#invasive#weed#weedy#naturalizes
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Ficaria
    Species:
    verna
    Family:
    Ranunculaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Root Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Europe, Northwest Africa, Southwest Asia
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Ground Cover
    Perennial
    Habit/Form:
    Mounding
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Showy bright, buttercup-yellow blooms March to May. Flower stalks rise 8"-9" inches tall.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Smooth
    Leaf Shape:
    Cordate
    Ovate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Glossy dark green, spreading rosettes, ovate-cordate, fleshy, up to 2” in length.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Problems:
    Invasive Species