Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Potentilla norvegica
Norwegian cinquefoil, rough cinquefoil

Distribution: Occurring on both sides of the Cascades crest in Washington; Alaska to California, east across North America to the Atlantic Coast.

Habitat: Usually in moist soil, often along irrigation ditches or in waste places.

Flowers: May-August

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Annual, Biennial, Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Taprooted annual or perennial, the stems erect to ascending, 3-6 dm. tall, simple to branching, often floriferous for much of its length, stiff-hairy below to sub-woolly above, not glandular.


Leaves alternate, mainly cauline; stipules well-developed, ovate, usually strongly toothed; leaflets usually 3, broadly ovate to obovate below to narrowly oblong above, 3-6 cm. long, serrate with rounded teeth, pubescent.


Inflorescence a rather compact cyme with a long peduncle; calyx 7-11 mm. broad, the 5 sepals broadly lanceolate, erect, the 5 bracteoles lanceolate and about equal in length to the sepals; petals yellow, broadly obovate, slightly shorter than the sepals; stamens usually 20; pistils numerous; style terminal, thickened basally.


Achenes light brown, 1.0-1.3 mm. long ovate, flattened.

Accepted Name:
Potentilla norvegica L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 1: 499. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Fragaria norvegica Crantz
Potentilla monspeliensis L.
Potentilla norvegica L. ssp. hirsuta (Michx.) Hyl.
Potentilla norvegica L. ssp. monspeliensis (L.) Asch. & Graebn.
Potentilla norvegica L. var. hirsuta (Michx.) Lehm.
Potentilla norvegica L. var. labradorica (Lehm.) Fernald
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Potentilla norvegica in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Potentilla norvegica checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Potentilla norvegica atlas page.

CalPhotos: Potentilla norvegica photos.

USDA Plants: Potentilla norvegica information.

15 photographs:
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