Dec. 17, 2017

graceful buttercup, Ranunculus inamoenus

How did this get to be graceful? Good common names have memory keys. They help you remember the name and the plant by reference to color, shape, or some other trait. Some are memorably fanciful, like queen-of-the-prairie. Others are translations of the Latin name. But graceful buttercup? I don't see it. For me it is none of the above. But there are about 300 species, 80 in the U. S. and Canada, so I guess at some point you start pulling names out of the air. Not that there's much air where this grows in the Rockies and high plains in AZ, CO, ID, MT, NE, NM, SD, UT, WA, WY, AB, BC, and SK(E). San Juan Co CO, 6/23/13.