Potentilla anserina (Silverweed Cinquefoil)
|Also known as:||Silver-weed|
|Habitat:||part shade, sun; wet sandy shores, wet meadows|
|Bloom season:||June - September|
|Plant height:||2 to 8 in., 1 to 3 ft. runner|
|Wetland Indicator Status:||GP: FACW MW: FACW NCNE: FACW|
|MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):|
|National distribution (click map to enlarge):|
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Flowers are yellow, about ¾ inch across with 5 rounded petals (sometimes more) and many short yellow stamens clustered in the center. A single flower is at the end of an erect naked stalk 1 to 6 inches long that sprouts from a node in the runner.
Leaves and stem:
Leaves are compound, 7 or more sharply toothed leaflets with small leaflets between each larger leaflet. Leaflets are to 1 inch long and ½ inch wide, becoming larger as they go up the leaf stalk. The underside is silvery from long white hairs. A leaf may be up to 12 inches long, but most often much less. A cluster of leaves sprouts from a node in the runner, separate from the flower stalk. The leaves tend to fan out, lying prostrate, but may be erect. Stems are red and sparsely covered in long white hairs.
Silverweed Cinquefoil often goes by Latin name Argentina anserina, but the accepted name in Minnesota is Potentilla anserina. When I first discovered this plant, all I saw were some yellow flowers that looked like they sprouted out of the ground all by themselves. The leaves were several inches away and I didn't notice the runner at all until I really started looking closer. After that it was easier to spot the leaf clusters to find more plants.
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- Silverweed Cinquefoil plant
- close up of stem node, just sprouting
- a 6-petaled flower
- more plants
- a colony of plants
- Silverweed Cinquefoil habitat
Photos by K. Chayka taken at Coon Rapids Dam Regional Park, Anoka County. Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken in Anoka County and in North Dakota.
Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?