Hardy Plant Society

Ranunculaceae Group

Buttercup the Frog © Sue Ward - 2007

Who are we?

The Ranunculaceae Group, one of the newest groups in the Hardy Plant Society, was formed in 2007; its aims are to inform, educate and enthuse about numerous ranunculids, by means of two Newsletters a year and an Annual Meeting. It now has just over 100 members from the UK, Europe and the USA, and has as its patrons renowned plantsmen Bleddyn Wynn-Jones and Dan Hinkley.

The botanical buttercup family Ranunculaceae, perhaps one of the most familiar and well-loved of all the plant families, derives its name from the Latin rana, a frog, because many of its members thrive in damp places. There are about 60 genera and 2500 species, more than enough to retain the interest of the members of the Ranunculaceae Group for many years!

Many species and cultivars of this large family of plants are widely grown in our mixed or herbaceous borders, such as Actaea, Aconitum, Adonis, Aquilegia, Anemone, Beesia, Caltha, Clematis, Delphinium, Eranthis, Hepatica, Helleborus, Pulsatilla, Ranunculus, Thalictrum and Trollius. The family also includes other less well known members such as Asteropyrum, Isopyrum, Oxygraphis, Semiaquilegia, and Paraquilegia, and there is even a woody shrub, Xanthorhiza, from North America, which is usually placed within the buttercup family.


This is produced twice a year, in Spring and Autumn, and includes members' articles and notes on a wide variety of ranunculaceae species and cultivars. It is hoped that as many members as possible will contribute so that it can become a forum for discussion on topics of interest, such as tips on cultivation, members' favourite ranunculids, in-depth accounts of a particular genus and plant hunting in remote places.

Annual Meeting and Study Day

Our annual get-together features guest speakers, garden visits and of course the chance to buy plants from specialist nurseries and a members' sales table. We plan to visit a different venue each year so that as many members as possible have a chance to attend and to vary the date so that different groups of plants can form the main focus.

Saturday 31 May 2014
Ranunculaceae Group’s AGM will include a Lecture and Garden Visit
at Norwell, Newark, Nottinghamshire

The AGM will be followed by a lecture given by
Andrew Ward of Norwell Nursery on
‘Beautiful Buttercups’.

In the afternoon Andrew Ward will give us a guided tour of his garden which will include tea and cakes, members will also visit the nursery.

Cost for the Day
Ranunculaceae Group Members £10.00 per person
Non Ranuculaceae Group Members £15.00 person
Priority will be given to Ranunculaceae Group members up to the 29 March 2014. After this date it will be open to all HPS members.
Applications from non-group members may be made before the 29 March 2014 but these will be held and processed in date received order.

To book your place, please complete the Booking Form (Word document) or Booking Form (pdf form) and return it with your cheque to Sue Hough at the address on the form or telephone 01420 562039 to request a booking form.

In 2013, we met on 22nd June at Roxwell Memorial Hall, The Street, Roxwell, Essex, CM1 4PA

Following registration and coffee at 10.00am there was a short AGM followed by a talk from Kevin Hughes on “Thalictrum and other members of the Ranunculaceae family”

During the afternoon we visited two gardens

  • Sheila Chapman (RHS Gold-Medal willing exhibitor of Clematis), has a compact garden beautifully trained with clematis, roses and other summer perennials
  • ‘Dragons’, belonging to member Margot Grice, is a plantswoman’s garden featuring sumptuous colour-themed borders.
The day included members’ plant sales and a raffle, refreshments at the hall and tea/coffee/cakes at ‘Dragons’.


All members of the Hardy Plant Society are eligible to join the Group.
Annual subscription rates are from 1st January to 31st December each year:
UK members: £4 Single or £6 Joint (two members at one address) for one year.
  £12 Single for 3 years or £18 Joint for 3 years.
Overseas members:  £5 Single or £7 Joint per annum.
To join the group please complete the downloadable Application Form (pdf file) and return with your cheque to the membership secretary whose address can be found on the form.
Membership Secretary:
     Sue Ward
     Telephone: 023 8061 5389
     email: ranunculaceae@hardy-plant.org.uk
For other information regarding the HPS Ranunculaceae Group please contact the Secretary:
     Sue Hough
     Telephone: 01420 562039
     email: ranunculaceae@hardy-plant.org.uk

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