Anatomy of a Flower: Ranunculus

In season spring to early summer

You've probably seen these blooms popping up in bridal bouquets everywhere. Find out why ranunculi are more than just a pretty face.

Can you find a flower with a more ranunculus name? (Sorry, we meant ridiculous.) Though the name may be lacking, this delicate-looking flower certainly makes up for it in both beauty and versatility.

The Tecolote, the most common of the 600 species of ranunculus, comes in almost any color imaginable. Its paper-thin petals, cascading in ruffles, are most often yellow and white, but can also be found in gold, a variety of pastels, pink, red, sunset orange, and bicolored picotee. Some species of ranunculus sport significantly fewer petals than the typical Tecolote but retain the lustrous quality ranunculi are known for.

Native to Asia, the ranunculus is a perennial that fares best in cool, dry climates with mild winters (think California or Texas). Blooms are abundant in spring and early summer but can be purchased out of season from a few wholesalers (check out

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