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Common Name: Bulbous Buttercup
Ranunculus bulbosus is a perennial plant that can grow up to 0.30 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and medicine
All parts of the plant are poisonous, the toxins can be destroyed by heat or by drying[
]. The plant has a strongly acrid juice that can cause blistering to the skin[
Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to N. Africa and Greece.
Meadows, lawns, dry pastures, grassy slopes and fixed dunes, preferring a calcareous sub-strata[
|Pollinators||Bees, Flies, Beetles, Lepidoptera
Prefers a moist loamy soil[
A common weed of lawns and gardens, it can be very difficult to eradicate when established[
]. It is a polymorphic species[
] and there is at least one named variety which has been selected for its ornamental value[
A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby plants, especially legumes[
Leaves - cooked. A famine food used when all else fails[
], and I would rather give it a miss even then[
Root - must be dried beforehand and thoroughly cooked[
]. When boiled, the roots are said to become so mild as to be eatable[
], though personally, I would rather give this one a miss as well[
]. See the notes above on toxicity.
The whole plant, and especially the sap, is acrid, anodyne, antispasmodic, diaphoretic, rubefacient[
]. It was at one time rubbed on the skin by beggars in order to produce open sores and thereby excite sympathy[
The root has been placed in a tooth cavity to act as a painkiller[
A decoction of the plant has been used in the treatment of VD[
Use this remedy with caution, see the notes above on toxicity[
Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. This species is a common weed and doesn't really need any help from us.
Division in spring. Very easy, though probably totally unnecessary, larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions.