Ranunculus sceleratus

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaRanunculaceaeRanunculusRanunculus sceleratus


An annual of shallow water or wet, disturbed, nutrient-rich mud, especially at the edges of ponds, ditches, streams or rivers which are poached by drinking livestock. It is salt-tolerant and frequent on grazed estuarine marshes. Its seeds are long-lived and plants can re-appear following disturbance after many years of absence. Lowland.



World Distribution

Circumpolar Boreo-temperate element, with a disjunct distribution; widely naturalised outside its native range.

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 8

Moisture (Ellenberg): 8

Reaction (Ellenberg): 8

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 8


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 2

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.8

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 15.4

Annual Precipitation (mm): 861

Life form information

Height (cm): 60

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary

Therophyte (annual land plant)



Clonality - primary

Little or no vegetative spread

Distribution information

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 1492

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 353

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 6

Atlas Change Index: -0.05

Weighted Changed Factor: -10

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


Distribution information

JNCC Designations


PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.

Atlas text references

Atlas (22c)
Grime JP, Hodgson JG, Hunt R
1988.  Comparative Plant Ecology.
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1989)