Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Spearwort (Ranunculus laxicaulis)
- Family: Buttercup (Ranunculaceae)
- Flowering: May-June.
- Field Marks: This is the only Ranunculus with all the leaves unlobed and with 5 petals about twice as long as the sepals.
- Habitat: Roadside ditches, wet prairies.
- Habit: Annual herb with fibrous roots.
- Stems: Erect or sprawling, smooth or slightly hairy, sometimes branched, up to 1 foot long.
- Leaves: Basal and on the stem, narrowly elliptic to ovate, with or without teeth, smooth or slightly hairy, none of them lobed, up to 3 inches long, up to 1 1/2 inches broad.
- Flowers: Solitary on slender stalks, with several flowers per stem, yellow.
- Sepals: 5, green, free from each other, about 1/6 inch long.
- Petals: 5, yellow, free from each other, up to 1/3 inch long.
- Stamens: 25-30.
- Pistils: Numerous, with a superior ovary.
- Fruits: Achenes oblongoid, yellowish, smooth, less than 1/20 inch long, without a beak.
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