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Manitoba Museum

Rose (Rosaceae)

Shrubby Cinquefoil

Dasiphora fruticosa (L.) Rydb.

A popular small garden shrub, Shrubby Cinquefoil is a perennial whose branches remain over the winter, though the leaves die off every fall. Its small, yellow flowers have no noticeable scent, but their nectar is attractive to butterflies, bees, and some flies. Their leaves also provide a food source for some butterfly larvae. These plants require very little care, making them a good choice for revegetation of disturbed areas.

Flower Colour:

  • Yellow

Flowering Season:

  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Fall

Flowering Months:

  • August
  • July
  • June
  • May
  • October
  • September

Canadian Rarity Status:

Not rare. Listed as “sensitive” in Nunavut and “may be at risk” on Prince Edward Island.

Physical Appearance:

The branching stems grow 30-150 cm, are spreading to erect, and have reddish-brown shredding bark. Short-stalked, alternate leaves are divided into 3-7 narrow, oblong to linear leaflets with smooth edges that are often rolled-under. Yellow flowers are single in upper leaf axils or clustered at branch tips. Each one has five rounded petals, 20-25 stamens, numerous styles, and five, hairy, lance-shaped sepals that persist in fruit. Fruits are numerous, egg-shaped, hairy achenes.

Gardening Notes:

Seeds and/or plants are often available from greenhouses and seed supply companies specializing in native plants. Plants can be propagated by seeds or cuttings, and are a good addition to butterfly, prairie, and rock gardens.

Canadian Distribution:

  • Alberta
  • British Columbia
  • Manitoba
  • New Brunswick
  • Newfoundland/Labrador
  • Northwest Territories
  • Nova Scotia
  • Nunavut
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
  • Yukon

Prairie Types:

  • Fescue Prairie
  • Mixed Grass Prairie
  • Tall Grass Prairie


  • Alpine Zones
  • Forest Edges
  • Open Woodlands
  • Prairies
  • River Valleys
  • Sagebrush
  • Savannahs
  • Wetlands

Moisture Conditions:

  • Dry
  • Moderate
  • Moist

Light Preference:

  • Full Sun

Soil Preference:

  • Clay
  • Saline
  • Sand
Shrubby Cinquefoil