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Trollius europaeus

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Ranunculaceae (Buttercup)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
1 metre tall
Fields, grassland, meadows, mountains, riverbanks, riversides, rocky places, scrub, waterside, woodland.

Yellow, 5 petals
Flowers are solitary and globular in shape with 5 to 15 incurved petals. Flowers measure approximately 4cm in size. Many yellow stamens and anthers. Bracts are absent from the flowers. Pollinated by flies, bees and beetles.
Purple-tipped, barrel-shaped fruits. The seeds ripen from July to September.
A clump-forming perennial with 3 to 5-lobed, deeply cut leaves. The leaves are similar looking to Meadow Buttercup or Meadow Cranesbill. Stipules are absent.
Other Names:
Bolts, Common Globeflower, Common Golden Ball, European Globeflower, Globeflower, Gowan, Lapper Gowan, Lockin Gowan, Lopper Gowan, Luckin Gowan.
Frequency (UK):
Occasionally seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Trollius europaeus, commonly known as European globeflower, is a herbaceous perennial plant that is native to damp meadows and stream sides in Europe and Asia. It has bright yellow, cup-shaped flowers that bloom in the spring and early summer. The leaves are basal, lobed, and dark green. The plant grows to a height of 30-100 cm. It is often used as an ornamental plant in gardens and can be propagated by seed or division.


Globeflower, also known as Trollius europaeus, is a beautiful and vibrant perennial plant that belongs to the Ranunculaceae family. This stunning flower can be found in the northern hemisphere, particularly in Europe and Asia, where it grows in moist meadows, marshes, and along riverbanks. In this blog post, we will explore the characteristics, benefits, and uses of this captivating flower.

Characteristics of Globeflower

Globeflower is a herbaceous perennial plant that can grow up to 1 meter tall. It produces large, spherical flowers that can be yellow, orange, or golden in color. These blooms are made up of numerous petals that are densely packed, giving the flower its distinctive globe-like appearance. The foliage of the globeflower is also notable, with its deeply lobed leaves that are often hairy and can be up to 20 cm in diameter.

Benefits of Globeflower

Aside from its striking beauty, the globeflower also has numerous benefits. For one, it is a valuable source of nectar for bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. This makes it an excellent addition to gardens and meadows, as it can help support local ecosystems and promote biodiversity. Additionally, some species of globeflower are used in traditional medicine to treat a variety of ailments, including fever, headaches, and respiratory problems.

Uses of Globeflower

Globeflower is a versatile plant that can be used in a variety of ways. For instance, it is a popular choice for ornamental gardens, where its bright blooms can add a splash of color and interest. It is also sometimes used in floral arrangements, particularly in bridal bouquets, where its cheerful and sunny appearance is a welcome addition. Additionally, the globeflower has been used in traditional medicine for centuries, with some cultures believing that it has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties.

In conclusion, the globeflower is a beautiful and beneficial plant that has captivated people for centuries. Its globe-shaped blooms and distinctive foliage make it a standout addition to any garden or meadow, while its benefits for pollinators and traditional medicine make it a valuable asset to local ecosystems and communities. Whether you are a gardener, herbalist, or simply a lover of nature, the globeflower is a must-have in your plant collection.

More about the Globeflower

Here are some additional details about globeflower that you may find interesting:

  1. Habitat and Distribution: Globeflower is native to the cooler regions of the northern hemisphere, including Europe and Asia. It thrives in moist, boggy soils and is commonly found growing in meadows, marshes, and along riverbanks. Some species of globeflower can also tolerate drier soils and are found in alpine and subalpine regions.

  2. Growing and Care: Globeflower is relatively easy to grow and requires little maintenance once established. It prefers a moist, well-draining soil and partial shade to full sun. The plant can be propagated by dividing the rhizomes or by sowing seeds in the spring. Globeflower can be susceptible to pests like aphids and slugs, but these can be controlled with natural insecticides and slug baits.

  3. Symbolism and Folklore: Globeflower has a long history of symbolism and folklore. In some cultures, it is believed to bring good luck and prosperity, while in others, it is associated with purity and innocence. In medieval Europe, globeflower was used as a remedy for insanity and was thought to protect against witchcraft.

  4. Cultivars and Varieties: There are many different cultivars and varieties of globeflower available, each with its own unique characteristics. Some popular varieties include 'Superbus' with bright yellow flowers, 'Alabaster' with white flowers, and 'Golden Queen' with deep golden-yellow flowers.

  5. Conservation Status: While globeflower is not considered endangered, some populations have declined due to habitat loss and fragmentation. In some areas, it is protected by law, and conservation efforts are underway to preserve its natural habitat and promote its cultivation in gardens and meadows.

In conclusion, globeflower is a fascinating and beautiful plant with a rich history and many benefits. Whether you are a gardener, herbalist, or simply appreciate the natural world, this captivating flower is sure to delight and inspire.

Some more Facts about the Globeflower

Here are some more interesting facts about globeflower:

  1. Etymology: The scientific name of the globeflower, Trollius europaeus, comes from the word "troll," which means globular or spherical, in reference to the flower's distinctive shape. The name "europaeus" indicates that it is a European species.

  2. Pollinator Magnet: The globeflower is a valuable source of nectar for pollinators, especially bees, butterflies, and moths. Its bright color and sweet scent attract these insects, which help to pollinate the flowers and ensure the plant's reproduction.

  3. Medicinal Uses: In traditional medicine, globeflower has been used to treat a variety of ailments, including digestive problems, fever, and inflammation. The plant contains alkaloids, flavonoids, and tannins, which have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antimicrobial properties.

  4. Toxicity: While globeflower has many benefits, it is also toxic to humans and animals if ingested. The plant contains alkaloids and glycosides, which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and other symptoms if consumed in large quantities.

  5. Cultural Significance: Globeflower has played a significant role in many cultures and traditions. In Russia, it is associated with the goddess of love and fertility, and was used in traditional wedding ceremonies. In Japan, it is known as the "golden ball" flower and is used in traditional medicine to treat eye infections.

  6. Garden Design: Globeflower is a popular choice for gardeners looking to add color and texture to their landscapes. It is often planted in meadow gardens, cottage gardens, and naturalized areas, where it can thrive alongside other wildflowers and native plants.

In summary, globeflower is a versatile and fascinating plant that has many benefits and cultural associations. Whether you appreciate it for its beauty, medicinal properties, or symbolism, this remarkable flower is sure to captivate and inspire.


Globeflowers filmed at Skelwith Bridge in the Lake District on the 13th May 2023.


Music credits
Fig Leaf Times Two by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license.

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Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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