Species Specifics: Buttercup

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Picture of buttercup plant

Controlling buttercup in your pastures is key to producing healthy forage and cattle. Buttercup first emerges in the fall and winter; control it with DuraCor® herbicide in the fall or early spring.


  • Buttercup spreads rapidly, leading to a sea of yellow in pastures.
  • When chewed, buttercup releases a toxin, protoanemonin, that causes mouth and throat blisters in livestock.
  • Buttercup first emerges in the fall and winter; control it with DuraCor® herbicide in the fall or early spring.



Buttercup (Ranunculus acris) is an herbaceous perennial. It grows up to 3 feet in height with hairy, deeply lobed leaves divided into three to five segments. Flowers are glossy yellow and are ¾ inch in diameter with a greenish center. The plant blooms from late May to September, depending on temperature and moisture, and infestations are often described as a sea of yellow in pastures. 


Buttercup can be found in pastures throughout most of the United States. It flourishes in pastures that have been heavily grazed or managed with minimal inputs and is more common in continuously grazed pastures. Livestock avoid grazing buttercup, as a toxin in the plant causes oral and gastrointestinal blisters; grazing avoidance often leads to patch grazing patterns in pastures.


Buttercup first emerges in the fall or winter; pasture management practices that suppress buttercup and promote grass growth prior to flowering are critical for control.

Treat buttercup with 12 to 20 fluid ounces per acre of DuraCor® herbicide. For best results, apply in the spring or fall when weeds are actively growing and conditions are favorable for plant growth. Use a higher rate in the rate range when growing conditions are less than favorable, when weeds are mature, when weed foliage is tall and dense, or when residual control is important. DuraCor also provides preemergence control of germinating seeds or seedlings of susceptible weeds that emerge following application.


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™ ® Trademarks of Dow AgroSciences, DuPont or Pioneer, and their affiliated companies or their respective owners. Under normal conditions DuraCor® is nonvolatile. DuraCor has no grazing or haying restrictions for any class of livestock, including lactating dairy cows, horses (including lactating mares) and meat animals prior to slaughter. Label precautions apply to forage treated with DuraCor and to manure and urine from animals that have consumed treated forage. DuraCor is not registered for sale or use in all states. Contact your state pesticide regulatory agency to determine if a product is registered for sale or use in your state. Consult the label for full details. Always read and follow label directions. © 2020 Corteva

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