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Lesser Spearwort Ranunculus flammula

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
ra-NUN-ku-lus FLA-muh-luh
This plant has medium severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Lesser Spearwort is a perennial that produces small solitary yellow flowers on slender, creeping stalks.  The tiny flower grows on short upward-facing stalks.  Each flower typically has 5 egg-shaped petals but may have four or as many as 11.  The center of the flower has numerous yellow stamens surrounding green styles. Spreading sepals are found just below the petals, and they sometimes are slightly pubescent. Stems creep along the ground and root at the nodes, a habit that creates a dense tangled mat of stems and leaves. Lesser Spearwort is found along lakeshores, pond margins, and other shallow water. When growing in the water, it spreads along or just beneath the surface.  

Insects, Diseases and Other Plant Problems:  All parts of the plant are poisonous.

More information on Ranunculus.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#native perennial#herbaceous#native wildflower#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#native perennial#herbaceous#native wildflower#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Ranunculus
    Species:
    flammula
    Family:
    Ranunculaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    USA and Canada
    Distribution:
    AK, AX, CA, CO, CT, ID, MA, ME, MN, MT, ND, NH, NM, NV, NY, OR, PA, RI, UT, VT, WA, WI
    Fire Risk Rating:
    high flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Flies and bees are attracted to the plant.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Ground Cover
    Herb
    Perennial
    Water Plant
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Petals:
    7 - 20 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Small bright yellow flowers, up to 1/3". Solitary flower on a slender 2-3" stalk. Each flower will have 5 egg-shaped petals, although some may have as few as 4 or as many as 11 petals. There are many yellow stamens gathered around green styles in the middle.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Smooth
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Linear
    Ovate
    Spatulate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Its dark green oval leaves are semi-prostrate. the surface is smooth or may have fine hairs (pubescent).
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Reddish stems up to 16" in length creep along the ground.
  • Landscape:
    Problems:
    Problem for Cats
    Problem for Dogs
    Problem for Horses
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Medium
    Poison Symptoms:
    Ingestion causes burning of the mouth, abdominal pain, vomiting, depression, anorexia, hypersalivation, wobbly gait, and bloody diarrhea. Skin redness, burning sensation, and blisters following contact with cell sap. All parts are poisonous when fresh. Heat or drying will destroy the toxins.
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Protoanemonin (an irritant)
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    Yes
    Poison Part:
    Bark
    Flowers
    Fruits
    Leaves
    Roots
    Sap/Juice
    Seeds
    Stems