Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Ranunculus aquatilis
white western buttercup, water crowfoot, white water crowfoot

Distribution: Occurring on both sides of the Cascades crest in Washington; Alaska to California, east across North America to the Atlantic Coast.

Habitat: In sluggish streams, ponds, lakes, and mudflats at low to moderate elevations.

Flowers: May-August

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Pubescent, aquatic perennial, the stem flaccid, rooting at the nodes, 1-2 mm. thick and up to 1 m. long.


Leaves alternate, the submerged ones 3-7 times trichotomously or dichotomously dissected into filiform segments; floating leaves similar, or simple, 5-15 mm. long and twice as broad, 3-lobed and toothed.


Pedicels stout, 2-6 cm. long, recurved in fruit; sepals 5, membranous, 2-5 mm. long; petals 5, white, 5-10 mm. long; nectary scale very small, forming a minute pocket; receptacle globose, hairy; stamens 10-15; pistils 12-15.


Achenes 1.5-2 mm. long, thin-margined, compressed; stylar beak 0.6 mm. long, deciduous.

Accepted Name:
Ranunculus aquatilis L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 1: 556. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Ranunculus aquatilis in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Ranunculus aquatilis checklist entry.

OregonFlora: Ranunculus aquatilis information.

E-Flora BC: Ranunculus aquatilis atlas page.

CalPhotos: Ranunculus aquatilis photos.

USDA Plants: Ranunculus aquatilis information.

64 photographs:
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