Sub-category: Buttercup family
Native to Europe, but commonly cultivated so it has a much wider distribution world-wide. It is a perennial herbaceous plant, growing in early spring from 5 to 15 cm tall. The plants start blooming soon after the foliage emerges from the ground. The leaves are divided into three segments and the flowers, produced on short stems, are held above the foliage with one flower per stem. They grow from underground root-like stems called rhizomes and the foliage dies back down by mid summer (summer dormant). The flower is 2 cm diameter, with six or seven (and on rare occasions eight, nine or ten) petal-like segments (actually tepals) with many stamens. In the wild the flowers are usually white but may be pinkish, lilac or blue, and often have a darker tint to the back of the 'petals'. The flowers lack both fragrance and nectar. There are many different cultivars, some of which have double the number of flower petals.
Found early spring in or near cultivated gardens and in landscaping.