Tuesday 21 May
Corn buttercup (Ranunculus arvensis)
What’s the World’s Favourite Species?Find out here.
Corn buttercup fact file
- Find out more
- Print factsheet
Corn buttercup description
Corn buttercup produces yellow flowers with shiny petals on an erect, leafy stem (2). The leaves are split into narrow lobes (3), and the seed heads (called achenes) are extremely spiky (4), and have earned this buttercup the alternative local names of Devil's claws, Devil-on-all-sides, and hellweed (5).
- Height: 15-60 cm (2)
Corn buttercup biologyTop
Corn buttercup range
Formerly widespread, but now very scarce (4) and only seen regularly in the south of England (3). It also occurs at a few sites in Wales, south-west England and some scattered localities in the north-west of England and Scotland (2). Elsewhere it is found in central and southern Europe, North Africa and west Asia, reaching as far east as India (2).Top
Corn buttercup habitatTop
Corn buttercup status
No conservation designations.Top
Corn buttercup threats
It is likely that agricultural intensification is responsible for the decline of this once common species (5), starting at the end of the nineteenth century when seed cleaning techniques were improved (2). Like all weeds of arable land, corn buttercup faces the more modern threats of herbicide and fertiliser use, the loss of field-margins, the use of more productive and competitive crops and alterations in the traditional style of crop rotation (5).Top
Corn buttercup conservation
Very little direct conservation action has been targeted at this species. It may benefit from agri-environment schemes.Top
Find out moreTop
Information authenticated by Plantlife, the wild plant conservation charity:
- A simple single-seeded fruit that falls from the plant in one piece; they usually in occur in clusters.
- Agri-environment schemes
- These schemes allow the government to compensate farmers for using methods that benefit the environment. The two main initiatives in the UK are the Countryside Stewardship Scheme and Environmentally Sensitive Areas. Since October 2000 these have formed part of the England Rural Development Programme (EDRP), administered by DEFRA, the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs. See http://www.defra.gov.uk/erdp/erdphome.htm for more on these initiatives.
- Lives or grows for just one year.
- Containing free calcium carbonate, chalky.
- National Biodiversity Network Species Dictionary (September 2002) http://www.nhm.ac.uk/nbn/
- Stace, C. (1991) New flora of the British Isles. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
- Sterry, P. (1997) Complete British Wildlife Photo Guide. Harper Collins Publishers, London.
- Mabey, R. (1996) Flora Britannica. Sinclair-Stevenson, London.
- Grigson, G. (1996) The Englishman's Flora. Helicon Publishers Ltd. Oxford.
- Byfield, A. (2003) Plantlife. Pers. comm.
MyARKive offers the scrapbook feature to signed-up members, allowing you to organize your favourite ARKive images and videos and share them with friends.
Terms and Conditions of Use of Materials
Copyright in this website and materials contained on this website (Material) belongs to Wildscreen or its licensors.
Visitors to this website (End Users) are entitled to:
- view the contents of, and Material on, the website;
- download and retain copies of the Material on their personal systems in digital form in low resolution for their own personal use;
- teachers, lecturers and students may incorporate the Material in their educational material (including, but not limited to, their lesson plans, presentations, worksheets and projects) in hard copy and digital format for use within a registered educational establishment, provided that the integrity of the Material is maintained and that copyright ownership and authorship is appropriately acknowledged by the End User.
End Users shall not copy or otherwise extract, alter or manipulate Material other than as permitted in these Terms and Conditions of Use of Materials.
Additional use of flagged material
Green flagged material
Certain Material on this website (Licence 4 Material) displays a green flag next to the Material and is available for not-for-profit conservation or educational use. This material may be used by End Users, who are individuals or organisations that are in our opinion not-for-profit, for their not-for-profit conservation or not-for-profit educational purposes. Low resolution, watermarked images may be copied from this website by such End Users for such purposes. If you require high resolution or non-watermarked versions of the Material, please contact Wildscreen with details of your proposed use.
Creative commons material
Certain Material on this website has been licensed to Wildscreen under a Creative Commons Licence. These images are clearly marked with the Creative Commons buttons and may be used by End Users only in the way allowed by the specific Creative Commons Licence under which they have been submitted. Please see http://creativecommons.org for details.
Any other use
Please contact the copyright owners directly (copyright and contact details are shown for each media item) to negotiate terms and conditions for any use of Material other than those expressly permitted above. Please note that many of the contributors to ARKive are commercial operators and may request a fee for such use.
Save as permitted above, no person or organisation is permitted to incorporate any copyright material from this website into any other work or publication in any format (this includes but is not limited to: websites, Apps, CDs, DVDs, intranets, extranets, signage, digital communications or on printed materials for external or other distribution). Use of the Material for promotional, administrative or for-profit purposes is not permitted.