homebanner homebanner homebanner homebanner homebanner homebanner
Potentilla fruticosa - L.
Common Name Shrubby Cinquefoil, Potentilla
Family Rosaceae
USDA hardiness 2-6
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Damp rocky ground, usually on limestone[17].
Range Europe, including Britain, from Sweden south and east to the Pyrenees, N. and C. Asia to Japan.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

Bloom Color: Pink, Red, White, Yellow. Main Bloom Time: Early summer, Early fall, Late summer, Mid summer, Mid fall.

Potentilla fruticosa Shrubby Cinquefoil, Potentilla

Potentilla fruticosa Shrubby Cinquefoil, Potentilla
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of shrub
Potentilla fruticosa is a deciduous Shrub growing to 1.2 m (4ft) by 1.2 m (4ft in) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 6. It is in flower from Jun to July. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required) and are pollinated by Bees, flies.The plant is not self-fertile.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.

Dasiphora fruticosa. Pentaphylloides fruticosa.

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Ground Cover; Hedge;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts:
Edible Uses: Tea.

A tea is made from the dried leaves[2, 46, 61, 183, 257, 272]. Used as a substitute for China tea, especially by people living at high elevations in the Himalayas[272].
Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.


The leaves are astringent[240]. The juice of the root is used in the treatment of indigestion[272].


Other Uses
Hedge;  Hedge;  Incense;  Packing;  Soil stabilization;  Tinder.

Can be grown as a medium size informal hedge[29, 200]. Trim in spring[200]. Some forms, notably 'Longacre', 'Elizabeth' and 'Gold Drop' have a dense spreading habit and make good ground cover plants[197]. A useful plant for controlling soil erosion[158]. The dry, flaky bark is used as a tinder for friction fires[99, 257]. (fires started by rubbing 2 pieces of wood together very fast). The powdered plant is used as an incense[272]. The leaves are used as a packing material in pillows[257].
Cultivation details
Landscape Uses:Border, Foundation, Ground cover, Massing, Rock garden, Specimen. Easily grown in a well-drained loam, preferring a position in full sun but tolerating shade[1]. Prefers an alkaline soil but tolerates a slightly acid soil[200]. Prefers a light well-drained soil[108]. Established plants are drought tolerant[190]. A very cold-hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to at least -25°c[184]. A very ornamental shrub[1], there are many named varieties[11]. Polymorphic[11]. A good bee plant[108]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233]. Dislikes growing under trees, especially Juglans species[18]. Plants are usually dioecious but hermaphrodite forms are also known[182]. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required. Special Features: North American native, Attracts butterflies, Attractive flowers or blooms.
Seed - sow early spring or autumn in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 3 - 5cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Pot up in the autumn if possible and overwinter in a cold frame[78]. Softwood cuttings taken in the early summer[11, 113]. Easy.
Other Names
Found In
Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :
Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Potentilla anserinaSilverweed33
Potentilla bicolor 10
Potentilla chinensisChinese Cinquefoil11
Potentilla cryptotaeniae 01
Potentilla discolor 21
Potentilla egedeiPacific Silverweed21
Potentilla erectaTormentil, Erect cinquefoil13
Potentilla fragarioides 11
Potentilla glandulosaGland Cinquefoil, Sticky cinquefoil, Arizona cinquefoil, Ashland cinquefoil, Ewan's cinquefoil, Hans11
Potentilla hippianaWoolly Cinquefoil01
Potentilla kleiniana 11
Potentilla multifida 20
Potentilla nepalensisNepal Cinquefoil, Cinquefoil21
Potentilla norvegicaNorwegian Cinquefoil01
Potentilla palustrisMarsh Cinquefoil11
Potentilla rectaRough-Fruited Cinquefoil, Erect cinquefoil21
Potentilla reptansCinquefoil, Creeping cinquefoil12
Potentilla rupestrisRock Cinquefoil10
Potentilla simplexOld Field Cinquefoil, Common cinquefoil01
Potentilla supina 11


Print Friendly and PDF
Expert comment
Botanical References
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
Soren Rosborg   Thu Jun 18 2009
My and my friend are trying to import some herbal tea from Russsia and in that occasion we need to prove for the authorities if Pentaphylloides fruticosa have been used as a food in the EU before May 1997! Can anybody help us with this kind of documentation? our maybe send some links?
   Jun 1 2011 12:00AM
Is "hardy to zone 6" a typo? If it's hardy to -25F, it really should be zone 2 or 3...
QR Code

What's this?

This is a QR code (short for Quick Response) which gives fast-track access to our website pages. QR Codes are barcodes that can be read by mobile phone (smartphone) cameras. This QR Code is unique to this page. All plant pages have their own unique code. For more information about QR Codes click here.

1. Copy and print the QR code to a plant label, poster, book, website, magazines, newspaper etc and even t-shirts.
2. Smartphone users scan the QR Code which automatically takes them to the webpage the QR Code came from.
3. Smartphone users quickly have information on a plant directly for the pfaf.org website on their phone.
Add a comment

If you have important information about this plant that may help other users please add a comment or link below. Only comments or links that are felt to be directly relevant to a plant will be included. If you think a comment/link or information contained on this page is inaccurate or misleading we would welcome your feedback at admin@pfaf.org. If you have questions about a plant please use the Forum on this website as we do not have the resources to answer questions ourselves.

* Please note: the comments by website users are not necessarily those held by PFAF and may give misleading or inaccurate information.

To leave a comment please Register or login here All comments need to be approved so will not appear immediately.

Subject : Potentilla fruticosa  

Plant Uses

Edible Uses
Medicinal Uses
Other Plant uses
Woodland Gardening
Why Perennial Plants?
Top Edible Plants
Top Medicinal Plants
Garden Design

Twiter      Facebook


Content Help
Support Us
Old Database Search
About Us
Sign In

PFAF Newsletter

Stay informed about PFAFs progress,
challenges and hopes by signing up for
our free email ePost. You will receive
a range of benefits including:
* Important announcements and news
* Exclusive content not on the website
* Updates on new information &
functionality of the website & database

We will not sell or share your email address.
You can unsubscribe at anytime.