One of the first flowers to raise its head in the late winter is this hairless perennial plant. With its shiny, narrow yellow 8-12 petalled flowers (20-30mm across), it blooms in woods, by rivers, in hedge-banks and roadsides between February and May. From a carpet of fleshy, dark-green, heart-shaped leaves which in their own right deserve a mention, these starry, glossy flowers open in sunshine, closing up in overcast conditions and at night. Nectar seeking insects in early spring help its pollination, although it also spreads by the fall of tiny little tubers from its leaf axils in early summer. This is one of our native plants and it belongs to the family Ranunculaceae
I first found this plant growing along a stream in Dundrum, Co Dublin in the '50's and photographed it near Wellingtonbridge, Co Wexford in 2005.
If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please record your sighting for the 2010 wildflower mapping survey at http://www.biology.ie/home.php?m=wildflowers
If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre