Ranunculus, with their layered, crepe-like petals that explode in blooms of red, yellow, orange, white and pink, are cheery in the Fall and equally festive in the Spring. The bright beauties spread their rainbow happiness in small pots on tables, as part of larger plant containers and along the front of home borders. They are also a favorite among Spring brides.
The budded and blooming Ranunculus currently available among the bedding plants at Roger’s are seed-grown hybrids, which are grown for their smaller, shorter and more compact habit. Bloomingdale is one of the more popular series. Those available during bulb season in October and November are sold as dormant tubers, and grow into the beautiful, tall plants that make excellent cut flowers. These start their lives right here in Southern California in the famous “Flower Fiields’ of Carlsbad. When planting these “bulb” varieties, known as Tecolote ranunculus, in flower beds, it’s best to place them in the middle so other plants can conceal their shaggy bases.
The name Ranunculus comes from the Latin root of “ran,” which means frog. Although no one knows exactly why it was named after a frog, some speculate is has to do with its affinity for wet, marshy places. In England, the common name for Ranunculus is “Buttercup,” apparently because of various legends linking it to dairy cows and butter. There’s also supposed to be a Native American myth associated with the varieties that grow in the Pacific Northwest: Coyote was tossing his eyeballs in the air for fun, and either Eagle or Buzzard swooped by and took them. So Coyote took Ranunculus to use as his new eyes. Hence, the common name in that region, “Coyote Eyes.”
Whether you want Ranunculus to festoon your frontyard or brighten your kitchen windowsill, stop by soon to check them out!