Marsh Cinquefoil

Potentilla palustris

  1. Wildlife
  2. Wildflowers
  3. Marsh Cinquefoil

About

Marsh Cinquefoil likes wet, boggy places, fens and peaty meadows. When it is in flower, between May and July, it is a good source of food for nectar-loving insects such as bees and hoverflies. Marsh Cinquefoil is one of a number of cinquefoils, but is unique in the UK as the only one with deep red flowers - the rest have yellow flowers. It is a member of the rose family.

How to identify

Marsh Cinquefoil can be identified by its deep red, star-shaped flowers (the red 'petals' are actually sepals) and the pinkish tinge to its green parts. Its leaves are divided into five long lobes with toothed margins.

Where to find it

Widespread in the north and west of Britain, less so in the south and East Anglia.

When to find it

  • May
  • June
  • July

How can people help

Human activity, including the drainage of land for agriculture, the loss of ponds through development and the removal of wet woods, has resulted in the disappearance of many of the UK's wetlands. The Wildlife Trusts are working closely with planners, developers and farmers to ensure our wetlands are protected. You can help by becoming a member of your local Trust; you'll find out about exciting wildlife happenings, events on your doorstep and volunteering opportunities, and be helping local wildlife along the way.

Species information

Common name
Marsh Cinquefoil
Latin name
Potentilla palustris
Category
Wildflowers
Statistics
Height: up to 50cm
Conservation status
Common.