90403Their little tufts of tuberous roots that were buried late last year were not much to look at. They were more like bits of dried and shriveled sea anemone than something that would grow and bloom with fluffy anemone like flowers. Ranunculus do not bloom as prolifically as related anemones, but they do so with different colors and bulkier flowers that seem crowded with too many thin petals.

Ranunculus like what so many flowering annuals like. They want rich soil, regular watering, full sun exposure, and perhaps a bit of fertilizer. They start blooming early in spring, and can continue blooming with multiple flowers a bit longer than other early spring bulbs that bloom only once. They finish bloom as the weather gets warm, and their handsome parsley like foliage starts to yellow.

Ranunculus are probably best mixed with other perennials and annuals that will compensate for them as they go dormant later in spring. They can alternatively be grown in a cutting garden just for cut flowers. Mature plants are less than a foot tall and wide, even if the flowers stand slightly taller. The full and symmetrical flowers can be various hues of white, pink, red, orange, yellow or purple.

12 thoughts on “Ranunculus

      1. They grow acres of ranunculus, in sections and rows of all the possible colors, right next to the freeway between Canon Drive and Palomar Airport Road in Carlsbad. It began as a private enterprise, and is now owned, I believe, by Armstrong Nurseries. They are open during blooming season for the public to walk the paths between sections — beautiful flowers, and beautiful views! http://www.theflowerfields.com/

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      2. When we opened the farm for the Open House, it was because so many wanted to see the rhododendrons in bloom. Otherwise, they bloomed through their season without anyone there to see it. It seemed like such a waste.

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      3. Well, that is how productions nurseries are. Blooms are merely byproducts. We actually needed to pluck unopened blooms off of the daphne stock plants to promote more vegetative shoots.


    1. They are difficult for those of us in mild climates. They are likely to do well in their first year, but do not often get enough chill to do well afterward. I do not grow them in my own garden, but some do at higher elevations.

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    1. The main reason I do not grow them is that they prefer more of a chill than we get here. I would have liked to write more about them, but there is very limited space in the gardening column that this short article is a part of.


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