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Close-up of the showy white flower of Western Buttercup flowers (Ranunculus occidentalis). One of 100+ species of Pacific Northwest native plants available at Sparrowhawk Native Plants, Native Plant Nursery in Portland, Oregon.

Western Buttercup

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Ranunculus occidentalis

Western buttercup is a perky little gem that is exceptionally versatile and attractive in a landscape setting. Its shiny, yellow, five-petaled flowers are an excellent source of early season pollen for native sweat bees, mining bees, mason bees, bumblebees and hoverflies. 

  • Plant type/canopy layer: deciduous perennial herbaceous plant
  • Size at maturity: 0-18” high, 0-1' wide
  • Light requirements: full sun to part shade
  • Moisture requirements: dry to wet soil
  • Bloom time: April to May
  • Growth rate/ease: fast growing, easy to grow
  • Wildlife support: flowers are a nectar source for adult butterflies, bees and other insect pollinators
  • Native habitat/range: common at low elevations in wet meadows, coastal bluffs, disturbed soils, and open woodlands across western WA, OR and northwester CA. Portland Plant List - yes.
  • Special features & uses: groundcover; landscape uses include rock gardens, pollinator gardens, meadowscapes and edges of a woodland garden

 Gardening with Western Buttercup: This cheerful perennial grows fabulously in a range of light and moisture conditions, though its ultimate preference is moist well-drained soil in partially shaded areas. Intermix many plants into your meadowscapes and pollinator gardens or to brighten up the margins of a woodland garden and other native beds. Blooms in sync with camas creating impressive swaths of purple and yellow.    

Photo Credit: Nikkie West, Sparrowhawk Native Plants