Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Plant Quiz Solved! Ranunculus fascicularis, Early Buttercup

Good call, Phytophactor and Scott. It is "ranunculaceous," and Scott is correct, it is Ranunculus fascicularis. This plant is especially at home on dry, sloping clay soil under a thin growth of oak and hickory. The specific epithet "fascicularis" refers to something being "bunched." The other day I saw this plant with its fascicled (or bunched) roots exposed from erosion. Amazing!
This plant always interests me with its change in appearance as it develops. Below are photos from last year showing how the petioles elongate and the plant thins out as the season progresses.

3 comments:

The Phytophactor said...

Is it this? They certainly look quite a bit alike, i.e., ranunculaceous.

Scott Namestnik said...

Sure does look ranunculaceous... looks like Ranunculus fascicularis to me.

A.L. Gibson said...

Scott, you beat me to it. That's what I was going to suggest. I found some getting ready to bloom down on the Edge of Appalachia preserve the other day and I thought this plant looked strikingly familiar!