Potentilla biennis Greene
biennial cinquefoil
Rosaceae (Rose family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Curtis Bjork     (Photo ID #16549)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Potentilla biennis
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Species Information

Annual or biennial herb from a taproot; stems mostly single, ascending to erect, 10-60 cm tall, leafy, densely covered with mixed fine and thicker glandular hairs.
Basal leaves few, stalked, palmately compound; leaflets 3, egg-shaped to lanceolate, 1-5 cm long, coarsely blunt-toothed, fine-hairy and glandular-hairy; stem leaves alternate, similar, several, reduced upward.
Inflorescence a spreading, leafy-bracted, terminal cluster of several to many stalked flowers; corollas yellow, cup-shaped, the petals 5, spoon-shaped, about 1/2 the length of the calyx-lobes; calyces glandular-hairy and appressed-hairy, 5-lobed, the lobes triangular-egg-shaped, 2-4 mm long, alternating with 5 narrower shorter bractlets; ovaries superior, the styles thickened at the base; stamens 10 or 15.
Achenes, numerous, clustered, lopsided-egg-shaped, about 0.8 mm long, yellow, smooth.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.

Habitat and Range

Moist meadows and waste places in the steppe and montane zones; infrequent in C and SC BC; E to SK and S to CO, AZ, CA and MX.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia