21 July 2020

How to grow Ranunculus: useful tips and caring

By Christopher Brickell


Professional florists and simply flower lovers know a Ranunculus well. They grow Ranunculus to decorate a flower garden. In appearance, ranunculus are very similar to small roses. These flowers are original in appearance and diverse in color.

grow ranunculus

This herbaceous plant is bred in the course of selection works. The wild species differ from garden ranunculus in smaller sizes. The plant is unpretentious and does not require much care. The flower belongs to perennial plants.

In appearance the plant resembles a small shrub (from 40 centimeters to 1 meter high) with a straight stem and a tuber-shaped root system. Medium size of ranunculus flowers (approx. 10 centimetres in diameter) come in a wide variety of colours except in shades of blue.

Be careful, if you decided to grow Ranunculus

grow ranunculus

If you decided to grow ranunculus in your garden, weigh the pros and cons well because the plant is considered poisonous. Adults can take precautions, but it is not recommended to grow ranunculus in a home with children.

The juice of Ranunculus is corrosive and stinging. Its chemical composition has not yet been sufficiently studied. It is only clear that the cause of poisoning is protoanemonin – a volatile substance with a pungent odor and burning taste. When inhaled, its vapors irritate the respiratory tract and eyes, there is a runny nose, tears, asphyxiation and spasms of the larynx muscles.

yellow ranunculus

Glycoside woundculin was found in Ranunculus acris as well as transaconitic acid, which inhibits cell division in animals. Ranunculus re-pens, in addition to protoanemonin, has a substance that gives hydrocyanic acid when splitting. Animals poisoned by Ranunculus sometimes die 15 to 30 minutes after the first symptoms (Ranunculus hay is not toxic for animals).

Humans poisoned by these plants deal with it very difficult, with severe pain in the esophagus, stomach and intestines, vomiting, diarrhea, heart failure. Such poisoning is possible with the careless use of Ranunculus as a means of folk medicine. If you grow ranunculus, be careful.

When and where to grow ranunculus in the open ground

grow ranunculus in open ground

Already at the end of winter you should take care of purchasing planting material. Until early April we recommend storing the tubers in a cool (no more than seventeen degrees) but well ventilated room. It is advisable to plant the flower(for seedlings) in an individual pot or peat tablet, as ranunculus do not tolerate transplants well.

If you plan to grow ranunculus, you can plant the tubers directly in the open ground, but you should do this a little later, around the second half of May. At this time the weather is already warm, which is very important for garden ranunculus because they are thermophilic and will not tolerate low night temperatures.

The place for planting flowers should be in the shade, preferably not in a draught or open area. The plant does not like strong gusts of wind. The area may be close to a small tree or shrub. In open spaces under direct sunlight the ornamental qualities of ranunculus will suffer. Its flowering will be short-lived and not abundant.

Neighbourhood with other plants and flowers


You can  grow ranunculus Ranunculus fits in a flowerbed with different plants. Its colour range allows it to be a self-sufficient flower, but in combination with flowering plants of blue and light blue it looks even more chic.

Experienced flower growers recommend that you pay attention to the “aggressiveness” of the plant’s root system. It can grow very quickly and can damage neighbouring cultures by occupying their territory.

Requirements for soil mixture

Before planting the tubers in the open ground it is recommended to take care of its nutrition. Use the humus as fertiliser. The acidity of the soil should be neutral and the soil itself loose and light.

Planting rules for ranunculus

The plant tubers, which have been stored for about 1-1.5 months in a cool room, now need to be soaked in a weak pink liquid of manganese or in a growth accelerator. Within twelve hours, the planting material will be saturated with the right amount of moisture and the roots will swell slightly.

You can prepare small holes at a distance of about 20 centimetres from each other on the prepared plot of land. Plant one tuber (spines down) in each well at a depth of 4-5 centimetres. After a couple of weeks, the first seedlings will appear.

If weather forecasts are unfavourable and there is a risk of cold, the seedbeds with the plants should be insulated.

Taking care of ranunculus flower in the open ground

open ground planting

If you decided to grow ranunculushis, you should know that this garden herbaceous plant does not require much time or special attention to care for.

It needs to be watered regularly but moderately. There should not be too much moisture. If the weather is rainy for a long time, the roots of the plant may begin to rot, so you should use a film cover. At the end of the summer season, watering should be gradually reduced and then completely stopped (with the appearance of fading leaves).

A good air exchange of the root system is necessary for abundant flowering, so you need to loosen the soil.

Good flowering depends on the necessary nutrients in the soil. Nitrogen-containing fertilisers (at the initial stage of plant development) and complex fertilisers with potassium and phosphorus content (during flowering) are used as fertilisers. We recommend applying the fertiliser twice a month at intervals of two weeks.

In order for the flowering period to be longer, you need to get rid of dried out flowers in time.

How to store the tubers

Ranunculus can not withstand winter temperatures, so you need to dig out their tubers at the end of September, thoroughly clean them from the soil and dry. You can then place each tuber in a pot with dry peat soil or wrap it in any natural fabric. In this way, at a temperature of between twenty and twenty-two degrees Celsius, the plants can be stored until the following season.

Ranunculus multiplication

Ranunculus multiplication

If you decided to grow ranunculus, then the most popular and easy way to multiply Ranunculusrcups is to divide the root. This way you can get several young bushes at once.

The seed multiplication method is very rarely used because of the low germination of the seeds.First, the seeds are sown in large planting boxes into a soil mixture of peat, sand and garden soil to a depth of no more than 2 centimetres. For fifteen days, keep the containers at a temperature of 10 to 15 degrees, maintaining a constant soil humidity.

The first seedlings should appear approximately 25-30 days later. Their appearance is when you move the boxes to a warm room (over 20 degrees). Now young seedlings need a lot of light and heat. If necessary, the plants can be enlightened with additional light.

Ranunculus can only be transferred to the garden area in the last week of May or early June. If you grow ranunculus with this method, the plant does not flower in the first year.

Ranunculus in landscaped design

Ranunculus multiplication

Ranunculus are a unique ornament on a flowerbed, garden plot, lawn or in a flower pot. Its colorful palette allows you to create an unusually beautiful flower arrangements. This plant blends perfectly with different plant cultures.

This flower is willingly used by landscape designers and bouquet planners, florists and decorators of celebrations.

How to grow ranunculus at home

If can grow ranunculus not exceeding 40 centimeters at home. Such species can grow in an ordinary flower pot and do not require additional support. The plant can also be kept on a glazed balcony or a warm loggia.

About one litre of soil is needed for one bush. Its composition is the same as on an open plot of land. As far as care is concerned, the plant needs to be watered more often because the soil in the tank dries out quickly due to the small amount of soil mixture.

At the end of the flowering and leaf fall period, the root tuber container should be stored for two months in a dry, light-proof place. At the end of February or beginning of March, the above-ground part of the plant will begin to appear.

Diseases and pests

Generally, all Ranunculus diseases are caused by improper care. The most common cause is too damp soil. This causes roots to rot, flower buds to fall off and powdery mildew to appear.

Various insecticide solutions and aerosols can help to combat powdery mildew. To prevent water from stagnating in the ground, you need to take care of drainage during planting and do not forget about loosening the soil. Sometimes the fading plant can be saved by drying the soil as usual.

Excessive watering is indicated by the appearance of mould on the plant leaf. In this case, you should stop watering completely for a while. The soil will dry out a little and the flower will be happy with its flowering again.

The most common pests are the spider mite and the nematode.


The signs of a tick are stains on the leaves (in a silver or yellow shade). In this case, urgent treatment with special preparations is required.

Signs of nematode appearance are twisting into tubular leaves, slow growth of the plant. The roots of such plants urgently need manganese treatment. It is enough to wash the roots of the plant removed from the ground in pink solution and the pest will die.