Vascular – Native
Herbs - Dicotyledons other than Composites
The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.
2n = 32
Current conservation status
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2017 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2012 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: By Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, John W. Barkla, Shannel P. Courtney, Paul D. Champion, Leon R. Perrie, Sarah M. Beadel, Kerry A. Ford, Ilse Breitwieser, Ines Schönberger, Rowan Hindmarsh-Walls, Peter B. Heenan and Kate Ladley.
2012 | Not Threatened
Previous conservation statuses
2009 | Not Threatened
2004 | Not Threatened
Perennial herb. Rosettes of tufted, shallowly lobed hairy leaves on arching hairy stolons.
North Island: Mt Egmont, Kaimanawa Range, Ruahine Range, Tararua Range, Rimutaka Range; South Island: Nelson, Westland, Fiordland, occasionally western parts of Marlborough, Canterbury, and Otago.
Damp places in forest and scrub, up to 1400 m.
Basal lvs 3-foliolate or rarely 3-lobed, hairy; leaflets shortly stalked, suborbicular to obovate, shallowly 3-lobed, often sparingly toothed, 1-2-(3) cm diam. Cauline lvs similar, smaller, often merely 3-lobed. Fls on ascending, hairy stems or axillary on stolons, few per stem, 4-8 mm diam. Pedicels terete, 2-6 cm long, hairy; hairs usually spreading, rarely subappressed above. Sepals reflexed at flowering, hairy. Petals 5, yellow, narrow-obovate; nectary single, c. 0.5 mm from petal base, covered by a small oblong or triangular scale. Receptacle hairy. Achenes 20-40 in globose heads, pale, moderately flattened, glabrous; body 1.5-2 mm long; beak straight, or curved only at tip, 0.5-1 mm long.
Ranunculus membranifolius is most similar to R. reflexus, from which it differs in its slender stoloniferous habit, shorter pedicels often with patent hairs, smaller fls and fewer, darker, and broader achenes with straighter beaks. Although the two species often grow together, R. membranifolius is commonest in areas west of the Main Divide in both islands and is not known north of about Taupō.
ranunculus: From the Latin ‘rana’ frog, meaning little frog and probably refers to the plants typical marshy habit where frogs abound
Fact sheet prepared by Melissa Hutchison (June 2021). Distribution, Habitat, Features, and Similar Taxa sections copied from Webb et al. (1988).
References and further reading
Webb C.J., Sykes W.R., and Garnock-Jones P.J. 1988: Flora of New Zealand Volume IV: Naturalised Pteridophytes, Gymnosperms, Dicotyledons. Botany Division, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, Christchurch.