Ranunculus. Say that five times fast. Yeah, we couldn’t do it either. So what is this oddly named flower? You may know it informally as a buttercup! Interestingly enough, this flower’s name doesn’t actually have a meaning. It is simply a combination of the Latin word ranas meaning ‘Frog’ and Unculus which translates into ‘little.’ Simply named because it grew in plentiful amounts amongst the little frogs in the ponds. Go on and practice spelling this curiosity’s name while we gather up some fascinating ranunculus facts that will fill your trivia sharing card just in time for your next get-together.
Myths and Legends
The Persians have a tale of a young prince dressed in green that fell in love with a beautiful nymph. He would visit her and sing to her all night and day! The other nymphs finally got fed up with his carrying on that they turned him into a ranunculus flower. Another totally dramatic version of the tale states that this poor prince’s admirations were never returned by the nymph, so he dies of heartbreak. A ranunculus now blooms in the place that he died.
The Native Americans have a different spin on the lore of this peculiar flower. They refer to the ranunculus as Coyote Eyes. In this story, a coyote had become bored and wanted to entertain himself, so he took out his eyes, threw them into the air, and caught them. Suddenly Eagle swooped down and snatched up Coyote’s eyes! Now Coyote was blind so he wandered around the fields of buttercups until he found the two that would perfectly replace his stolen eyes.
Charm and Attractiveness
The symbolism of this cheerful yellow flower carries across every culture and generation with deep- rooted meanings. A bouquet of ranunculus radiates sentiments of charm and physical attractiveness. The Victorians have long been sending these beautiful blossoms to the objects of their affection. We totally won’t tell if you order these blooms and send them to yourself! Hello there, #selflove. On the flip side of things, in some rural areas, this bloom is considered just a weed! They tend to grow quite abundantly and are quite the hearty bloom, so in certain communities, receiving this flower could actually mean ‘ingratitude.’
Botanical Uses and Meanings
This lovely bloom can actually be harmful by way of gastric upset to farm animals. Most animals graze around it, but use caution around young children or baby animals. The Native Americans are known to use to ranunculus roots to treat skin ailments such as boils and warts. If you suffer from eczema, a poultice of Buttercup could be quite soothing.
For our fabulous spiritual chicks out there, if you’re looking for your inner child, look no further: a buttercup essential oil aromatherapy treatment can bring you that sweet, sweet vibe of peace and joy. We get it; we are getting older. We wake up aching for literally no reason at all. If you are like us, you are starting to feel the effects of muscle strain and stiffness simply because you slept ‘wrong.’ Luckily Buttercup is known to ease the pains and strains of muscle tension and body aches. We’ll take five bottles, please!
Cheer Up, Butter Cup
Throughout our lives, we are often faced with circumstances where we need to give a gift, and flowers are the classic go-to that are a guaranteed perfect gift. But what situation would you ever need to give a buttercup? It turns out that there are some perfect occasions. Maybe you just met your new neighbor and want to give them a welcome gift. To send a message of goodwill, grab some of these blooms, put them in a lovely vase with some daisies or wildflowers for an added pop of color, and you’re good to go!
If you’ve ever been invited to a housewarming party, you know exactly what it feels like to have no idea what to bring. You don’t want to be typical and bring them a coffee pot, so why not gather up some ranunculus to brighten up their foyer? Or maybe you and your bestie had a disagreement after an intense Game of Thrones marathon; she chose Cersei’s side, but you’re team Tyrion. Get back into her good graces and cheer her up with a lovely buttercup Bouq as a message of good intentions and heartfelt sentiments.
Butter Cups Can Glow!
Do you remember those summers when you were a child, and you and your friends would hold a buttercup under your chins and it would ‘glow’ if you liked butter? Without fail, you’d come home with yellow tinted skin and that tint is actually a skin irritant in the pollen of the flower! Well, there is a scientific answer to this phenomenon.
Unlike most plant petals that have corrugated cells, the ranunculus is quite special. They have mirror flat cells in those soft buttery petals. This means those cells are bouncing back light via an air gap between them. That is why, no matter what direction you are viewing this sunny bloom from, it always looks vibrantly yellow. The buttercup will reflect UV light, a special trick the ranunculus has to attract bees to pollinate it.
Beauty That Lasts
The Buttercup is one of those flowers that just keep on going! The ranunculus will keep its vibrancy long after it has been cut from the garden. Once this bloom has been cut, it will last up to 7 days without any special food or care instructions. Their longevity is preferred among many brides as a centerpiece to their bridal bouquet. Check out this lovely DIY wedding blog devoted to the radiance of the ranunculus for some inspiration for your big day.
Flowers That Got Power
Solar power, that is. This five-petaled beauty is working hard under the surface. They literally track the sun! So when it is cold, ranunculus forms its petals into a cup shape to collect solar energy to warm itself. This also gives a cozy home to its guests. Insects will flock to its center for a little warm-up session. Because of this blossoms cup-like shape, it collects sunlight directly to its center, where its reproductive organs lay. This gives a power boost to the whole system; ripening its stamens and boosting the pollen intake. Once the flower is pollinated, the solar heat will help with the development of the seeds.
This radiant, bright flower may be hard to pronounce, but it is unforgettable. It smells heavenly, it looks like a sunny day, what is not to love? We hope you enjoy these iconic buttercups as much as we do! I mean, just look at them!Shop All