Open the Advanced Search

Alpine Cotula

Cotula alpina

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
For more information please download the BSBI Code of Conduct PDF document.


Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Asteraceae (Daisy)
Also in this family:
Alpine Blue Sow-thistle, Alpine Fleabane, Alpine Saw-wort, Annual Ragweed, Annual Sunflower, Argentine Fleabane, Autumn Hawkbit, Autumn Oxeye, Beaked Hawksbeard, Beggarticks, Bilbao Fleabane, Black Knapweed, Black-eyed Susan, Blanketflower, Blue Fleabane, Blue Globe-thistle, Bristly Oxtongue, Broad-leaved Cudweed, Broad-leaved Ragwort, Brown Knapweed, Butterbur, Buttonweed, Cabbage Thistle, Canadian Fleabane, Canadian Goldenrod, Carline Thistle, Chalk Knapweed, Chamois Ragwort, Changing Michaelmas Daisy, Chicory, Chinese Mugwort, Chinese Ragwort, Coltsfoot, Common Blue Sow-thistle, Common Cat's-ear, Common Cudweed, Common Daisy, Common Dandelion, Common Fleabane, Common Goldenrod, Common Groundsel, Common Michaelmas Daisy, Common Mugwort, Common Ragwort, Common Wormwood, Coneflower, Confused Michaelmas Daisy, Corn Chamomile, Corn Marigold, Cornflower, Cotton Thistle, Cottonweed, Creeping Thistle, Daisy Bush, Dwarf Cudweed, Dwarf Thistle, Early Goldenrod, Eastern Groundsel, Eastern Leopardsbane, Elecampane, English Hawkweed, Fen Ragwort, Feverfew, Field Fleawort, Field Wormwood, Fox and Cubs, French Tarragon, Gallant Soldier, Garden Lettuce, Giant Butterbur, Glabrous-headed Hawkweed, Glandular Globe-thistle, Glaucous Michaelmas Daisy, Globe Artichoke, Globe-thistle, Goat's Beard, Golden Ragwort, Golden Samphire, Goldilocks Aster, Grass-leaved Goldenrod, Great Lettuce, Greater Burdock, Greater Knapweed, Grey-headed Hawkweed, Guernsey Fleabane, Hairless Blue Sow-thistle, Hairless Leptinella, Hairy Michaelmas Daisy, Harpur Crewe's Leopardsbane, Hawkweed Oxtongue, Heath Cudweed, Heath Groundsel, Hemp Agrimony, Highland Cudweed, Hoary Mugwort, Hoary Ragwort, Hybrid Knapweed, Intermediate Burdock, Irish Fleabane, Jersey Cudweed, Jerusalem Artichoke, Lance-leaved Hawkweed, Lavender-cotton, Leafless Hawksbeard, Least Lettuce, Leopardplant, Leopardsbane, Leptinella, Lesser Burdock, Lesser Hawkbit, Lesser Sunflower, London Bur-marigold, Magellan Ragwort, Marsh Cudweed, Marsh Hawksbeard, Marsh Ragwort, Marsh Sow-thistle, Marsh Thistle, Meadow Thistle, Melancholy Thistle, Mexican Fleabane, Milk Thistle, Mountain Everlasting, Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Musk Thistle, Narrow-leaved Cudweed, Narrow-leaved Hawkweed, Narrow-leaved Michaelmas Daisy, Narrow-leaved Ragwort, New England Hawkweed, New Zealand Holly, Nipplewort, Nodding Bur-marigold, Northern Hawksbeard, Norwegian Mugwort, Oxeye Daisy, Oxford Ragwort, Pearly Everlasting, Perennial Cornflower, Perennial Ragweed, Perennial Sow-thistle, Perennial Sunflower, Pineapple Mayweed, Plantain-leaved Leopardsbane, Ploughman's Spikenard, Plymouth Thistle, Pontic Blue Sow-thistle, Pot Marigold, Prickly Lettuce, Prickly Sow-thistle, Purple Coltsfoot, Rayed Tansy, Red Star Thistle, Red-seeded Dandelion, Red-tipped Cudweed, Robin's Plantain, Roman Chamomile, Rough Cocklebur, Rough Hawkbit, Rough Hawksbeard, Russian Lettuce, Safflower, Salsify, Saw-wort, Scented Mayweed, Scentless Mayweed, Sea Aster, Sea Mayweed, Sea Wormwood, Seaside Daisy, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Shaggy Soldier, Shasta Daisy, Shetland Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Shrub Ragwort, Sicilian Chamomile, Silver Ragwort, Slender Mugwort, Slender Thistle, Small Cudweed, Small Fleabane, Smooth Cat's-ear, Smooth Hawksbeard, Smooth Sow-thistle, Sneezeweed, Sneezewort, Spear Thistle, Spotted Cat's-ear, Spotted Hawkweed, Sticky Groundsel, Stinking Chamomile, Stinking Hawksbeard, Tall Fleabane, Tall Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Tansy, Thin-leaved Sunflower, Treasureflower, Trifid Bur-marigold, Tuberous Thistle, Tyneside Leopardplant, Viper's Grass, Wall Lettuce, Welsh Groundsel, Welted Thistle, White African Daisy, White Butterbur, White Buttons, Willdenow's Leopardsbane, Winter Heliotrope, Wood Burdock, Wood Ragwort, Woody Fleabane, Woolly Thistle, Yarrow, Yellow Chamomile, Yellow Fox and Cubs, Yellow Oxeye, Yellow Star Thistle, Yellow Thistle, York Groundsel
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
20 centimetres tall
Grassland, heathland, meadows, moorland, mountains.

Yellow, 4 petals
The flowers are creamy yellow and solitary. They measure up to 7mm across.
The fruit is an achene (a type of dry, one-seeded fruit).
A small, mat-forming perennial plant mainly found around the moors in Scotland and Yorkshire. The leaves are flat, smooth and light green. The leaves are finely divided and measure up to 3cm long and 1cm wide.
Other Names:
Alpine Brass Buttons, Mountain Brass Buttons.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Cotula alpina, also known as alpine brass buttons or mountain brass buttons, is a species of flowering plant in the aster family (Asteraceae). It is native to the mountainous regions of Europe, including the Alps, and it grows in alpine meadows, rocky slopes, and other high-elevation habitats. The plant is a low-growing, herbaceous perennial with small, yellow, daisy-like flowers that bloom in the summer. Cotula alpina is an important food source for many species of wildlife, and it is also used medicinally and as a natural dye.


Alpine Cotula: A Rare and Endangered Alpine Plant

Alpine Cotula, also known as Cotula alpina, is a species of flowering plant that is native to the alpine regions of New Zealand. This plant is known for its unique and delicate beauty, making it a popular choice among botanists and plant enthusiasts.

However, despite its popularity, Alpine Cotula is a rare and endangered species, and is listed as vulnerable on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. The main threat to its survival is habitat loss and degradation due to human activities such as agriculture, urbanization, and tourism.

Alpine Cotula is a low-growing, herbaceous plant that reaches a height of just 10-20 cm. Its leaves are narrow and linear, and its flowers are yellow and daisy-like, with a bright yellow center and white petals. The plant flowers from December to February, and produces seeds that are dispersed by the wind.

This plant is well adapted to the harsh alpine environment, where temperatures are often below freezing, and the growing season is short. To survive in these conditions, Alpine Cotula has a compact, rosette-like form, and is covered with dense, silver-grey hairs that help to protect it from the cold and wind.

Despite its small size, Alpine Cotula plays an important role in the alpine ecosystem. It provides food and habitat for a range of insects and other small animals, and is an important component of the alpine vegetation. The plant's roots help to stabilize the soil and prevent erosion, which is particularly important in alpine areas where soil erosion can have a significant impact on water quality and availability.

Conservation efforts are underway to protect and conserve Alpine Cotula and its habitat. This includes habitat restoration and protection, as well as the management of invasive plant species that compete with the plant for resources. Additionally, research is being conducted to better understand the plant's ecology and to develop effective conservation strategies.

Alpine Cotula is a beautiful and unique plant that plays an important role in the alpine ecosystem. Despite its rarity and vulnerability, conservation efforts are underway to protect and conserve this species for future generations to enjoy. If you are interested in supporting the conservation of Alpine Cotula and other alpine plants, consider donating to a conservation organization or volunteering your time to assist with habitat restoration efforts.

In addition to conservation efforts, it is also important to raise awareness about the significance of Alpine Cotula and the challenges it faces. Educating the public about the importance of preserving alpine habitats and the species that inhabit them can help to ensure that these unique ecosystems are protected for future generations.

Gardening enthusiasts can also play a role in conserving Alpine Cotula by choosing to grow native plants, such as this species, in their gardens. By planting and caring for these plants, gardeners can help to conserve their genetic diversity and ensure that they are not lost from the wild.

There are also opportunities for botanists and other scientists to contribute to the conservation of Alpine Cotula. Research into the ecology and genetics of this species can help to better understand its needs and the threats it faces, and inform the development of effective conservation strategies.

In conclusion, Alpine Cotula is a rare and beautiful plant that is facing significant challenges, including habitat loss and degradation. However, with the help of conservation efforts, gardening enthusiasts, and scientific research, it is possible to protect and conserve this species for future generations to enjoy. By working together, we can help to ensure the survival of this unique and important alpine plant.