Buttercups, from the family of Ranunculaceae, come in multiple species, some of which grow in aquatic environments and form a very specific group. Buttercup is a herbaceous plant perennial or annual with abundant flowers and variable colors. We know of course the Creeping Buttercup, this famous Buttercup which grows spontaneously in our countryside, but there are many others that we like to cultivate in our gardens for their ornamental touch indisputable, such as the Florists’ Buttercup, also called Asian Buttercup, or the richly colored Anjou Buttercup, beautiful flowering plants that are suitable for all gardeners, even beginners.
Plant a Ranunculus
Buttercup planting takes place at the beginning of the spring for summer flowering. It is important that the earth is not soggy and the sun was able to warm it. However, it is possible to wait until autumn, but only in regions with a mild climate, which allows you to see your buttercups bloom the following spring.
Here is the method of planting buttercups in the ground.
- Immerse the claws of buttercups in lukewarm water to interrupt vegetative rest. This immersion can last between 5 and 12 hours.
- As soon as the claws have doubled or even tripled in size, they should be planted.
- Push them in about 7 cm deep and cover them with loose, fine soil.
- Water very little.
If you want to create a clump of buttercups, you take care to space the plants about fifteen centimeters in all directions.
Buttercup can also be planted in a pot. It is necessary to choose a container of 25 cm in diameter for a foot of Ranunculus. A large pot of at least 45 cm in diameter is necessary if it is to accommodate two or three plants. You can also opt for a 70 cm long planter and install up to 4 claws. Each container must be filled with potting soil and the claw planting depth is about 5cm. We finish by watering very lightly.
If outside temperatures are still chilly, the Ranunculus newly installed in its pot should be kept inside, in a bright but cool room since it is preferable that the temperature does not exceed 14 or 15°C. It is necessary to wait until the risks of frost are completely removed to finally put the plant outside, preferably in partial shade.
Buttercup loves semi-shaded to sunny exposures most can’t stand the scorching sun. It needs plenty of light to thrive. We therefore avoid the corners of the garden that never see the sun. As for the ground, it should preferably be light, rich in humus, loose and perfectly drained so that the roots of the plant do not bathe in water.
Special mention for the Wild Buttercup Ranunculus flammula) which likes a very humid environment, even an aquatic environment. It is also nicknamed the Buttercup of the banks. If you have an organic bathing pond, this is exactly the type of Ranunculus to grow because it is one of the oxygenating plants.
Caring for your Buttercups
Buttercups are easy to growboth in the ground and in pots.
Watering should never be excessive. In the massifs, they impose themselves only after at least 8 days without rain and it is important to keep a light hand. Ranunculus prefers slightly dry soil rather than too wet. Concerning the watering of the Ranunculus in pot, it must be done once a week, again without excess, and care is taken to always empty the water from the saucers.
A bit of’flower plant fertilizer can be distributed regularly, especially for the varieties of Ranunculus with large flowers. We simply opt for a fertilizer to be diluted in the irrigation water.
You have to think about remove dead leaves as well as wilted flowers. When the flowering period is over and the leaves are completely dry, the buttercups should be cut back to ground level. Thinning out is required after a few years if the Buttercup grows.
Buttercups grown in the ground should be protected in winter against the cold because most of them are frost-prone. Special mention for the Ranunculus of the florists, able to withstand up to -8 to -10°C.
And mulch is therefore welcome. It is however preferable, under a hard climate, to dig up the claws in order to winter in a frost-free room, dry and airy. They can be replanted in the spring at the same time as many bulbous plants.
Pests and diseases
As soon as the buttercups are planted, it is strongly recommended to prevent gastropods from approaching them. Snails and slugs are very fond of its young leaves which they can devour in a very short time.
Apart from these undesirables, no particular parasite is to be feared in Ranunculus, and it is also a plant very disease resistant. You just have to avoid overwatering because excess water inevitably leads to rotting and promotes cryptogamic diseases.
Certainly among the most popular, the Buttercup of florists, which can reach a height of 45 to 50 cm, produces a abundant flowering. Ses delicate flowers are of rare beauty, whether single, double or semi-double. They are available in a rich palette of very nuanced colors, orange, yellow, white, pink, mauve, red and many more… They bring a note of refinement in the garden or on the terrace, but are also used to make beautiful bouquets and create beautiful flower arrangements. The flowers of this plant, which is also commonly called Garden Buttercup, hold up very well in a vase.
Of course, all buttercups deserve a place of choice in beds and in pots. We can therefore be tempted by various varieties whose flowers are of very variable shapes and colors. This is perfect for enjoying their beauty throughout the seasons, and even in winter in the southern regions. But it is absolutely essential to remove faded flowers as you go to encourage the formation of new flower buds.