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Herbaceous Perennial

Potentilla reptans
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

creeping cinquefoil

P. reptans is a low-growing perennial that spreads from its creeping stems, rooting at the nodes. Serrated, hairless and rounded leaves are held in groups of five to seven. Yellow flowers, like flat buttercups, are borne in the leaf axils throughout summer into early autumn

Other common names
common cinquefoil
five finger grass
see morefive leaf
Mary's five fingers
sink-field

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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
1–2 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Yellow Green
Autumn Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or East–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Rosaceae
Native to the UK
Yes
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Matforming
Genus

Potentilla can be herbaceous perennials, deciduous shrubs, or annuals, with palmately or pinnately divided leaves and solitary or clustered, saucer-shaped, 5-petalled flowers appearing over a long period

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Europe to Himalaya

How to grow

Cultivation

Found naturally in hedgerows, sand dunes, grassy places and rough ground

Propagation

Propagate from creeping stems or propagate by seed

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Wildflower meadow
Pruning

None required

Pests

Usually trouble free

Diseases

Usually trouble-free

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