Ranunculus

From Academic Kids

This article is about the flower. For other definitions, see Buttercup (disambiguation).

Ranunculus

Creeping buttercup (Ranunculus repens)
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Plantae
Division:Magnoliophyta
Class:Magnoliopsida
Order:Ranunculales
Family:Ranunculaceae
Genus:Ranunculus
Species

over 400; see text

Ranunculus is a large genus of about 400 species of plants in the Ranunculaceae. It includes the buttercups, spearworts, water crowfoots and the lesser celandine (but not the greater celandine of the poppy family Papaveraceae).

They are mostly herbaceous perennials with bright yellow or white flowers (if white, still with a yellow centre); some are annuals or biennials, and a few have orange or red flowers.

The Water crowfoots (Ranunculus subgenus Batrachium), which grow in still or running water, are sometimes treated in a separate genus Batrachium. They have two different leaf types, thread-like leaves underwater and broader floating leaves.

All Ranunculus species are poisonous when fresh to cattle, horses, and other livestock, but their acrid taste means they are usually left uneaten. Poisoning can occur where buttercups are abundant in overgrazed fields where little other edible plant growth is left, and the animals eat them out of desperation. The poisons are degraded by drying, so hay containing dried buttercups is safe.

Some species are popular ornamental flowers in horticulture, with many cultivars selected for large and brightly coloured flowers.

An old superstition says that if you hold a buttercup under your face, and yellow light is reflected on your face, it means that you like butter.

Missing image
Buttercup_sweden_20050612_01.jpg
Buttercup (Sweden)

Partial species list

and many morede:Hahnenfuß eo:Ranunkolo fr:Renoncule it:Ranunculus he:נורית lt:Vėdrynas nl:Boterbloem pl:Jaskier

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