Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains
Potentilla L. -- Cinquefoil
Annual and perennial herbs (woody at the base in P. palustris), erect,
decumbent, sprawling or stoloniferous. Leaves pinnately or palmately
compound, alternate or mostly basal, petiolate to subsessile, stipulate; leaflets
3-many, oblong to elliptic or obovate, serrate. Flowers perfect, regular,
perigynous; calyx of 5 persistent sepals, these alternating with several
to many, entire to toothed bractlets which are usually narrower and shorter
than the sepals, the sepals and bractlets fused at the base to form a saucer-shaped
hypanthium; corolla of usually 5 yellow (dark red in P. palustris)
petals which are attached near the summit of the hypanthium; stamens
many, usually 10-25; pistils numerous, simple, styles simple, laterally
or nearly basally attached to the ovary, deciduous. Fruit an aggregate
of many small, smooth to ridged achenes, surrounded by the persistent hypanthium.
||Petals very dark red; plants woody at the base.
||Petals yellow; plants herbaceous throughout.
||Plants extensively stoloniferous; leaves white-tomentose
||Plants lacking stolons; leaves green, glabrous to
||Leaves pinnately compound with 7-11 leaflets.
||Leaves palmately compound with 3-7 leaflets.
||Achene surface ridged at maturity; petals 2.5-4
mm long, nearly equaling the sepals; leaflets 3 (rarely 5).
||Achene surface smooth; petals 1-1.5(2) mm long,
much smaller than the sepals; leaflets 3-7.
26. Rosaceae, the Rose Family
2. Potentilla L. -- Cinquefoil
- 1. Potentilla anserina L. -- Silverweed
- 2. Potentilla norvegica L. -- Strawberryweed
- 3. Potentilla palustris (L.) Scop.
-- Bog cinquefoil
- 4. Potentilla paradoxa Nutt. ex Torr.
& Gray -- Bushy cinquefoil
- 5. Potentilla rivalis Nutt. -- Brook
Return to Family -- Rosaceae - The Rose Family
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