South Dakota Native Plant Research
Rosaceae : Dasiphora fruticosa

Rosaceae : Dasiphora fruticosa


Download Mature plant (1.5 MB)

Download Leaves (722 KB)

Download Flowers (1.0 MB)

Family Name


Common Name

Shrubby cinquefoil


Dasiphora fruticosa is a perennial, spreading, bushy shrub with erect branches 20-100 cm tall. The young branches are covered with soft white hairs that are lost with age, the bark turning red and becoming shredded. The alternate, compound odd-pinnate leaves have petioles up to 12 mm long and brownish stipules 6-12 mm long. The blades have 3-7 linear to narrowly obovate leaflets, 10-20 mm long, with entire margins and hairs on both surfaces, the top with scattered white hairs and the bottom with a denser, gray covering. The inflorescence consist of single axillary flowers and small terminal cymes of 2-5 flowers. The flowers have a saucer-shaped hypanthium, 3.5-5 mm wide, with 5 spreading, pointed, green sepals 4-6 mm long, alternating with small bracts. The 5 yellow, spreading, round to club-shaped petals are 6-13 mm long. There are 20-30 stamens, inserted on the edge of a nectar ring, and numerous hairy pistils on an elongated receptacle. The fruit is a cluster of light brown, hairy, ovoid achenes, each < 2 mm long. Shrubby cinquefoil blooms from June into August on hillsides, meadows and in canyons in western South Dakota.

Synonym: Potentilla fruticosa

Additional Notes

Shrubby cinquefoil is a common horticultural plant used in gardens around the state, often escaping into nearby areas. The plant is a hardy shrub with attractive leaves and showy flowers that attract native bees and butterflies.

Horticulture Notes

Seed collection: Collect seeds in August and September after they become brown.

Germination: The seeds are often difficult to germinate. Fall sowing is recommended.

Vegetative propagation: Soft wood cuttings with rooting hormone application in mid-summer.

Soil: Well drained, moderately fertile soils from sandy loams to clays.

Light: Full sun to partial shade.

Water: Moist to medium dry.

Rosaceae : Dasiphora fruticosa