Northern Ontario Plant Database
Dasiphora fruticosa (L.) Rydb.
En: shrubby cinquefoil
Rosaceae (Rose Family)
General: A low, spreading to erect, deciduous shrub, to 1 m tall. Bark reddish-brown to dull brown, shredding easily; young twigs bearing long white silky hairs. Dasiphora fruticosa was formerly known as Potentilla fruticosa L.
Leaves: Alternate, pinnately-compound, 1–3.5 cm long, usually with 5 sessile leaflets (occasionally 7); the upper 3 leaflets united at their base; petiolate. Leaflets narrowly-elliptic to lanceolate, 1–3 cm long, 2–9 mm wide; dark green above, paler beneath and with long silky hairs; blade tapering at the base and apex; margins entire and curved under (revolute); stipules papery-thin, brown, persistent, attached to the petiole.
Flowers: Bisexual, usually borne singly or in small clusters, flowers 1–2.5 cm across. The calyx has 5 triangular, pointed lobes, alternating with a row of 5 elliptic-lanceolate bracts (the epicalyx); petals 5, bright yellow, broadly ovate to round; stamens numerous; pistils numerous, attached to the base (receptacle) of the flower. Flowers bloom throughout summer.
Fruit: The numerous pistils develop into many small hairy achenes surrounded by the persistent calyx.
Habitat and Range: The shrubby cinquefoil is quite variable in its habitat preference. It is found in wet fens, on bog hummocks, streambanks, shores, and on dry sites with limestone bedrock, particularly alvars (in Ontario) and limestone barrens (in Newfoundland). This circumboreal species is found throughout Ontario.
Internet Images: The Dasiphora fruticosa webpage from the Gallery of Connecticut Wildflowers, a website of the Connecticut Botanical Society.
The Dasiphora fruticosa webpage from the Missouriplants.com website.
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