Herbs & Plants

Potentilla norvegica

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Botanical Name : Potentilla norvegica
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Potentilla
Species: P. norvegica
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Synonyms: Potentilla monspeliensis.

Common Name : Norwegian Cinquefoil

Habitat : Norwegian cinquefoil is native to much of Europe, Asia, and parts of North America, and it can be found in other parts of the world as an introduced species. Its natural habitat is arable fields, gardens, banks, hedgerows, wasteland, logging clearings, loading areas and occasionally shores, often on sandy or gravelly soils

Norwegian cinquefoil is usually an annual but may be a short-lived perennial. It produces a basal rosette of leaves from a taproot, then a green or red stem growing erect up to about 50 cm (20 in) in maximum length, and branching in its upper parts. The leaves are stalked and are either divided into five leaflets, or have three leaflets with the terminal leaflet being divided into three lobes. The basal leaves have narrow, sharp-tipped stipules while the upper leaves have elliptical stipules which are longer than the leaf stalks. Each leaflet is up to 5 cm (2 in) long and is widely lance-shaped with toothed edges. The inflorescence is a cyme of several flowers. Each flower has five rounded yellow petals no more than 4 mm (0.2 in) long inside a calyx of hairy, pointed sepals with reddish tips. There are twenty stamens, a separate gynoecium and many pistils. The calyx lengthens after flowering and the fruit is a cluster of pale brown achenes.
It is in flower from Jun to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile.


Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Easily grown in a well-drained loam, preferring a position in full sun but tolerating shade. Prefers an alkaline soil but tolerates a slightly acid soil. An annual, biennial or short-lived perennial plant. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.
Seed – sow early spring or autumn in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in spring. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer.

Medicinal Uses:
The root is astringent. A decoction of the root has been gargled, or the root has been chewed, in the treatment of sore throats. A cold infusion of the whole plant has been used to relieve pain. The plant has been burnt and the fumes used to treat sexual infections. All the above uses are recorded for the sub-species P. norvegica monspeliensis. (L.)Aschers.&Graebn.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

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