Greater Spearwort - Ranunculus lingua


Medium to tall robust, stoloniferous, hairless plant with erect hollow, scarcely branched stems. Flowers large, bright glossy yellow 3 to 5 cm across. The leaves are variable, with the basal leaves being long stalked and withering early, whilst the stem leaves are short stalked or stalkless, long lanceolate and entire, being narrower at the base.

Similar Species

Lesser Spearwort is similar and much more common, but the size of the flowers of Greater Spearwort make it distinctive.

Identification difficulty

Marshy ground, fens, pond and stream margins. Often grows in shallow water.

When to see it

Flowers June to September.

Life History


UK Status

Widespread but infrequent in Britain and quite rare in Scotland.

VC55 Status

Not common in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 10 of the 617 tetrads.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map