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Have You Seen This Plant?

The fig buttercup, or lesser celadine (Ficaria verna) is an introduced, aggressive species that is rapidly colonizing our area, particularly along streams. We need your help to understand where it has spread so we can treat it effectively. And we have to move fast; the plants flower in March-April and are gone by June.

Identification: lush, often large clumps of rubbery, heart-shaped, dark-green leaves on short stalks; netted veins on leaf undersides often described as reptilian. Attractive, glossy multi petaled yellow flowers in March and April that are less than a foot above the ground.


The plant reproduces with bulblets that multiply rapidly with disturbance. Fig buttercup needs professional removal and/or treatment by natural resources staff. We are partnering with WakeNature and the City of Raleigh to map the spread and their staff will come treat.


Become a Citizen Scientist! Help us map it using iNaturalist. Here’s how:

  1. Log into our Fig buttercup in Wake County, NC project on SciStarter.
  2. If you don’t have an iNaturalist account, download the app and/or set up a free online account. Join the Fig Buttercup in Wake County project, under Community > Projects.
  3. Upload your photos with the species name, Ficaria verna.
  4. Take many photos and document as many clumps as you can!

Written by: Dr. Steph Jeffries