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Ranunculus: How to Care and Plant Ranunculus [2023 Guide]


The Ranunculus flower, sometimes known as a buttercup, is spectacular with its stunning, brightly colored flowers, ruffled petals, and straight stems.

They are popular with florists and gardeners for floral arrangements. They are ideal for growing in the garden, then being cut off and put in vases to bring color into your house.

Have you thought of growing Ranunculus flowers yourself? If so, here is everything you need to know about growing these beautiful flowers!

What Are Ranunculus Plants?

The Ranunculus genus contains around 600 species of flowers and is a member of the Ranunculaceae plant family.

The flowers are easily recognized due to their layers of petals and are commonly referred to as water crowfoots, buttercups, or spearworts.

These are available in various shapes and hues, giving any garden the much-needed color and texture. The most prevalent flower colors are pink, red, gold, pale yellow, white, and orange.

Ranunculus can be perennials or annuals and will grow back unless conditions permit this.

NOTE: Bridal bouquets in the springtime are very popular with pure white Ranunculus (like white Tecolote).

Ranunculus Plants

Photo Credit: Dreamstime.

When Is the Best Time to Plant a Ranunculus Plant?

The plant Ranunculus is sold at many stores when it’s not too chilly. In the early spring and fall, they are most frequently accessible.

Also, this is the growing season of Ranunculus flowers.

TIP: For a vase life of 10 or 12 days, cut buds when they are pigmented and spongy like marshmallows but not yet fully opened.

Where Is the Best Place to Plant Ranunculus?

Although they thrive in zones 3 through 10, they thrive in locations with mild winters and long, cold springs. They must be started indoors.

The bulbs can also be left in the ground in warmer climates, but growing Ranunculus indoors might be advisable if you live in colder areas.

They are suitable for zones 4–7 and hardy in zones 8–10.

The ranunculus corms are planted in warm climates (growing zones 8–10) in the fall to bloom in late winter and early spring.

They are good companions for other spring flowers, such as primroses, pansies, and larkspur. Plant it in cutting garden beds, containers, flower beds, and borders.

Until the ranunculus flowers stop blooming, ensure the area is moist. You may add some liquid plant foods every couple of months to help with growth.

Use a top-notch soilless growing mix and shield the bulbs from winter’s cold moisture while growing Ranunculus in containers with proper drainage holes.

Be careful to give the roots plenty of room while growing Ranunculus in pots so that the foliage can expand to its maximum potential.

The roots will become vulnerable to root rot without adequate drainage holes.

The ranunculus corms are typically spring planted in late winter or early spring for blooming in early summer in locations without winter hardiness zones 4-7.

Home gardeners frequently grow Ranunculus in pots instead of gardens in these regions.

TIP: In warm climates, fall-planted or pre-sprout corms from spring-planting Ranunculus by soaking them in room temperature water. With the tips sticking out, plant the bulbs in the ground. The new corms are ready for planting when white roots become apparent.

Ranunculus Flammula

Ranunculus Flammula – Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

How Should You Plant Ranunculus Plants?

Depending on the hardiness zone, there are several planting methods and times to plant corms.

Because they are so susceptible to the cold season, ranunculus corms must be kept out of the subfreezing range.

Use a low tunnel or frost cloth to shield the area from the cold. Pre-soaked corms should be ready for spring planting in zones 4 through 6.

NOTE: You can get 6/7 cm corms from Longfield Gardens, an online supplier of high-quality flower bulbs, annuals, and perennials, to enjoy the biggest, brightest blooms.

Ranunculus Repens

Ranunculus Repens – Photo Credit: Dreamstime.

How Do You Care For Your Growing Ranunculus Bulbs?

The soil must be moist once the bulbs have been placed. You can supplement the plants’ diet with extra nutrients every few months to promote development.

If properly cared for, these are simple flowers to grow and can return yearly. Plant the plants in extremely well-drained soil to encourage them to return the following year.

Can you leave Ranunculus on the ground? When blooming is finished, you can deadhead Ranunculus or trim dead flowers and dead foliage; it can be left in the ground to rebloom.

If you remove the bulbs, wait until the foliage dies, then remove dead flowers.

When you’re ready to grow ranunculus bulbs again the following spring, put them in a cold, dry spot and keep them in the dark.

Ranunculus Asiaticus

Ranunculus Asiaticus – Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

What Are the Different Types of Ranunculus?

Ranunculus species are widespread and range from local wildflowers to cultivars developed for beautiful displays.

  • Ranunculus carolinianus: Native winter annuals or short-lived perennials found in low forests and soggy thickets, sometimes known as the “Carolina buttercup.”
  • Ranunculus flammula: This native plant, lesser spearwort or sagebrush buttercup, grows slender, creeping stalks covered in tiny, five-petaled yellow flowers.
  • Ranunculus repens: The weedy perennial creeping buttercup grows to a height of 8 to 12 inches and a spread of 36 inches.
  • Ranunculus asiaticus: A plant with parsley-like leaves from late spring to early summer. They are frequently known as the Persian buttercup. Persian buttercups are tuberous perennials.
  • Ranunculus asiaticus x hybrids: Both the tuberous corms that can be planted at home and the ranunculus flowers that florists sell are hybrids.
  • Ranunculus asiaticus x Cloni Success’ Venere’: Hot pink ruffled flowers on strong, thick stems are ideal for cutting.
  • Ranunculus asiaticus x’Elegance Giallo’: Cut flowers with a bright yellow hue and durable quality.
  • Ranunculus asiaticus x Amandine’ Salmon’: Light orange to pink blossoms with a warm salmon hue.
  • Ranunculus’ Hanoi’: ‘Hanoi’ would be the offspring of cotton candy and marshmallows if they married and had a child.
  • Ranunculus Ficaria: It is a typical wildflower in North America, growing beside streams, grassy meadows, and wooded places.
Ranunculus Hanoi

Ranunculus Hanoi – Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

How Do You Grow Ranunculus From Seed?

Although they can be planted from seeds, the flowers are often planted from corms.

You should start the growing process indoors about 12 weeks before the average frost date of your last spring frost.

  1. When placed in a seed-starting tray, the growing mix should be wet but not in water.
  2. After liberally planting bulbs on top of the growth medium, add a thin layer of seed starting medium on top of the seeds, then use your palm to gently press the rich soil down.
  3. The seeds will germinate in around20 to 30 days if you place them under a grow lamp and keep the tray at 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. When the seedlings are about 2 inches tall, thin the foliage and let them grow under a grow light.
  5. When the daily temperature is in the upper 40s, transplant the seedlings into 2 to 3 inches deep pots and start hardening them. At night or whenever a threat of frost exists, bring the plants inside.
  6. You can plant in the garden when the temperature is consistently in the upper 50s to upper 60s F.
Ranunculus Ficaria

Ranunculus Ficaria – Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

How Do You Make Ranunculus Bloom?

The plant will quickly bloom if it is put in full sun. Until the corms become larger in the second season, foliage grown from seeds may have fewer blooms.

Large corms will produce a more robust plant with more flowers since they store energy than little corms.

What Are the Common Issues With Ranunculus Flowers?

  • Overwatering
  • Clay soil planting
  • Lack of sunlight
  • Freezing temperatures
Ranunculus Flowers

Ranunculus Flowers – Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The following are some of the most frequent queries regarding the plant Ranunculus:

Does Ranunculus Grow Back Every Year?

Yes. If properly cared for, Ranunculus is a simple flower to grow and can return yearly.

What Month Does Ranunculus Bloom?

These plants will start to bloom in the early spring and continue through summer.

Is Ranunculus Hard to Grow?

The ranunculus plant is simple to grow and resistant to pests and diseases. For healthy growth, Ranunculus needs to be put in a sunny spot.


You won’t believe these magnificent blossoms are buttercups when you see them!

These differ significantly from their tiny yellow wildflower relatives, who have incredibly elaborate and sumptuous petal-packed spring and early summer flowers.

You’ll enjoy them in the garden as well as in the vase!

Gardeners and florists have long adored Ranunculus for their unique attributes.

They have been bred to perfection to produce the most magnificent blossoms.


Other Flower Guides from Planet Natural:

Mandevilla: Complete Planting, Growing, and Care Guide

37 Popular White Flowers for Home Gardeners with Pictures

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