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white mountain marsh-marigold - Caltha biflora




Caltha leptosepala howellii is a PERENNIAL growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in). It is hardy to zone (UK) 3. It is in flower from May to June. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, beetles, flies.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid and neutral soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers wet soil and can grow in water. [PFAF]


Two varieties occur in BC:
1. Leaves longer than wide, the margins more sharp-toothed than round-toothed; flowers usually 1 per stem; subalpine and alpine......................... var. leptosepala
1. Leaves nearly as wide as long, the margins subentire to broadly round-toothed; flowers mostly 2 per stem; lowland to subalpine........................... var. biflora (DC.) Lawson [IFBC-E-flora]


Edible Uses



A plant of boggy soils and shallow pond margins[1], it requires a deep rich slightly acidic soil[200]. It grows well in heavy clay soils. Plants are hardy to about -20°c[187]. A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby plants, especially legumes[54]. There is some disagreement over the correct name for this species, with some authorities calling it C. howellii.[PFAF]


Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame in late summer[200]. Stand the pots in 2 - 3cm of water to keep the soil wet. The seed usually germinates in 1 - 3 months at 15°c[138]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a tray of water in a cold frame until they are at least 15cm tall. Plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer. Division in early spring or autumn[200]. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer or following spring.[PFAF]


The information presented on this site is provided for educational purposes. Self diagnosis and treatment, without due diligence, could be harmful and is not encouraged. Some information & images may be copyright. Every effort has been made to present the information in the spirit with which it was originally presented. Some data has been omitted for legal and/or practical consideration. There is some data not covered in the scope of this project, including, but not limited to, cell culture and large-dose animal studies. I have made comparisons and links between related species which may later prove erroneous. I have not verified the information for accuracy and I accept no responsibility for its authenticity. Many of the plants presented are poisonous, have poisonous properties, or could cause illness through misuse, allergic reaction, drug interactions and environmental contaminants. Please use caution and mindfulness when harvesting plants for any use.

Page last modified on 02-11-2016