Trailing Tormentil - Potentilla anglica


Similar to Tormentil (Potentilla erecta) but with persistent basal leaf rosettes and with the stems rooting from at least some of the nodes. Leaves often with 5 leaflets, flowers larger than Tormentil (Potentilla erecta), 14 to 18 mm with 4 or 5 petals, solitary or several together. Hybridisation occurs and specimens may need to be confirmed by an expert.

Similar Species

Potentilla reptans, Potentilla erecta and the hybrids Potentilla x mixta and Potentilla x italica

Identification difficulty
ID guidance

Some flowers with 4 petals like Tormentil, but leaves with 4-5 leaflets and longer petioles, which diminish in length towards the stem apex.  Very similar to the sterile hybrid, but Trailing Cinquefoil is fertile, so the old flowerheads have achenes containing seeds.

Recording advice

The County Recorder has asked for a specimen of this plant to be retained for verification


Grassland and verges on acid soils.

When to see it

Flowers June to September.

Life History


UK Status

Scarce in Scotland, Widespread in Wales and western England less common in parts of central and eastern England.

VC55 Status

Scarce or under recorded in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 26 of the 617 tetrads.

It is on the current VC55 Rare Plant Register (Jeeves, 2011), but may have been overlooked


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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


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

UK Map