GOLDILOCKS BUTTERCUP

WOOD BUTTERCUP

Ranunculus auricomus

Buttercup Family [Ranunculaceae]

month8apr month8april month8may

status
statusZnative
 
flower
flower8yellow
 
inner
inner8green
 
morph
morph=HemiZygo
 
petals
petalsZ5
(5 - 0)
stem
stem8round
 

14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Likes woods and nestling in hedges. Low and straggly, barely reaching a foot above ground.


8th May 2009, Torver, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Seems to also like occupying the corners where ground meets wall beside a footpath.


8th May 2009, Torver, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
At first glance seems to be a mixture of two plants, but detailed inspection reveals a confusion of palmately lobed basal leaves and narrow lanceolate stem leaves on the same plant.


8th May 2009, Torver, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Misshapen asymmetric yellow flowers with nominally five petals. [Lower left is a Dandelion].


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Palmately shaped deeply cut leaves near ground level; whorls of 3 to 9 narrow linear leaves on the flower stem.


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Distinct mid-rib in linear stem leaves.


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
With nominally five shiny golden-yellow petals, but often with petals missing.


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Misshapen petals give it a shabby appearance.


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Numerous spoon-shaped golden-yellow anthers separate petals from greenish-yellow central spiky orb.


8th May 2009, Torver, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Ragged petals not un-common, especially when central fruit enlarging.


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Five green woolly sepals under the petals. Short downy hairs on flower stem.


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Basal leaves palmately and deeply lobed, similar to those of Creeping Buttercup.


14th May 2010, The Row, Whitbarrow, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
A whorl of 9 stem leaves. Note the very short 'leaves' near the central node.


8th May 2009, Torver, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
The fruit is similar to many other Buttercups, knobbley with the pointed tips having a very slight outward curve.


Not to be confused with : Goldilocks Aster [a plant with similar name]

Unlike many other Buttercups, Goldilocks buttercup does not hybridize with any other Buttercup.

Superficial resemblance to : other Buttercups

Not to be confused with: Goldilocks Aster [a plant with similar name, but belonging to a different family].

Uniquely identifiable characteristics

Distinguishing Feature : Imperfect flowers with up to 5 golden-yellow buttercup-type petals, usually misshapen or with several missing altogether.

Being the only Buttercup that is not acrid, Goldilocks Buttercup must be free from the poisonous Protoanemonin that all other Buttercups possess. It is perennial species of buttercup found beside trackways and at the edges of moist woods in lime-rich areas. Being Apomictic it has formed several hundred agamospecies. These specimens were found beside a limestone drystone wall others on a path near Whitbarrow Fell which is in a limestone area.


  Ranunculus auricomus  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Ranunculaceae  

Distribution
 family8Buttercup family8Ranunculaceae
 BSBI maps
genus8Ranunculus
Ranunculus
(Buttercups)

GOLDILOCKS BUTTERCUP

WOOD BUTTERCUP

Ranunculus auricomus

Buttercup Family [Ranunculaceae]

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