Tormentil - Potentilla erecta


Low, creeping, patch-forming, downy plant not rooting at the nodes. Leaves usually trifoliate, toothed upwards towards the tip, silvery below. Stem leaves unstalked, basal rosette leaves withered by flowering time. Flowers yellow, 7 to 11 mm, mostly 4 parted, a few borne in lax clusters.

Similar Species

Potentilla anglica and the hybrids Potentilla x mixta and Potentilla x italica also have 4-petalled flowers

Identification difficulty
ID guidance

4-petalled flowers, leaves ternate (with 3 leaflets) but with two stipules at the base of the leaf-stalk that look like leaflets; without stalks or with very short stalks.


Grassy habitats, heaths and pathways.

When to see it

May to September.

Life History


UK Status

Common throughout Britain.

VC55 Status

Fairly frequent but localised in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 196 of the 617 tetrads.

be our species champion

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


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

UK Map