Wikijunior:Summer Flowers of Northern New England/Ranunculus

 
 
Buttercup
(Ranunculus)
Flower
Leaf
Description:
Buttercups are a bright yellow flower with five petals. The flowers usually grow at the top of a long stem. The leaf shape depends on the species, but they usually have wavy edges that zig and zag deeply back and forth.

There are nearly a hundred species of Buttercups growing in the United States, and four hundred species world-wide. All Buttercups are poisonous when eaten fresh by cattle, horses, and other livestock, but their acrid taste and the blistering of the mouth caused by their poison means they are usually left uneaten.

Quick Facts:
In Pacific Northwest of the United States the buttercup is called "Coyote’s eyes". In the the Nez Perce Indian legend, Coyote was tossing his eyes up in the air and catching them again when Eagle snatched them. Unable to see, Coyote made eyes from the buttercup.

Whole plant
Last modified on 7 July 2010, at 18:35