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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Dwarf Buttercup - Ranunculus pygmaeus

Status Under Review
Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S2S3
C-value: 9

Agency Status


External Links

General Description
Stems decumbent or erect, 1–4(–6) cm with nearly glabrous foliage. Basal leaf blades reniform, to 6 mm long with 3–5 lobes. Flowers solitary with petals 2–3 mm long, about as long as the sparsely hairy sepals. Achenes glabrous, ca. 1 mm long with a straight beak ca. 0.5 mm long; heads ovoid 3–5 mm high (Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Species Range

Range Comments
Circumpolar south to CO (Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 6

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Moist to wet soil of turf, often on cliffs, cool slopes or along streams or seeps; alpine (Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

The following animal species have been reported as pollinators of this plant species or its genus where their geographic ranges overlap: Bombus auricomus, Bombus bifarius, Bombus nevadensis, and Bombus bimaculatus (Macior 1968, Thorp et al. 1983).

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Macior, L.M. 1968. Bombus (Hymenoptera, Apidae) queen foraging in relation to vernal pollination in Wisconsin. Ecology 49:20-25.
    • Thorp, R.W., D.S. Horning, and L.L. Dunning. 1983. Bumble bees and cuckoo bumble bees of California (Hymenoptera: Apidae). Bulletin of the California Insect Survey 23:1-79.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Aho, Ken Andrew. 2006. Alpine and Cliff Ecosystems in the North-Central Rocky Mountains. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 343 p.
    • King, C. R. 1953. The Ranunculaceae of Montana. M.S. Thesis, Bozeman, MT: Montana State College. 82 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Dwarf Buttercup — Ranunculus pygmaeus.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from