The undersides of the leaves are silvery with fine hairs, hence the name silverweed. In the bottom photo, the leaf on the left has been turned upside down to display the silver color. Silvery cinquefoil leaves are also silver underneath, but the leaf shape is different.
To us, the flowers look solid yellow, but bees, which can see ultraviolet light, see them differently. In this ultraviolet image by photographer Bjorn Rorslett, a bull's-eye pattern is visible. Patterns visible in ultraviolet light help lead bees and other insects to the flower's pollen and nectar.
- Synonyms: Argentina anserina , Potentilla anserina
- Family: rose (Rosaceae)
- Habitat: wet sandy shores, wet meadows
- Height: around 8 inches tall, growing from horizontal runners 1 to 3 feet long
- Flower size: 3/4 to 1 inch across
- Flower color: yellow
- Flowering time: June to August
- Origin: native
Silverweed sends out long runners, and new plants grow at the tips.
Note the silvery underside, caused by small white hairs.