Perennial, erect or ascending, rarely prostrate herb. Rootstock woody. Stem 30-50 cm long, angular, covered with thick pilose indumentum. Leaves 5-foliate at the base, upper 3-foliate, petioles 5-15 cm long, densely and thickly pilose. Basal stipules membranous, auriculate, entire, cauline stipules entire to divided, leafy. Leaflets sessile, variable in shape obovate to elliptic, serrate dentate, upper and lower surfaces sparsely adpressed pilose. Flowers 1.5-2.5 cm diam, pedicels 2-4 cm long, densely sericeous. Sepals densely pilose, outer elliptic ovate, obtuse, inner ovate, acute. Petals 1.0-1.2 cm long and broad, bright red, obcordate. Stamens 20-25 dark red. Carpels numerous, styles subterminal, c. 2 mm long, filiform, a little thickened at the base, stigma not dilated. Achenes wrinkled.
Fl. Per.: July-August
Type: ‘Seed sent from Nepal by Dr. Wallich and grown in Botanical Garden, Edenburgh (K)’.
B-7 Changlagali to Dungagali, A.P. Young (BM), Mukshpuri near Nathiagali 1960, D. McVean (E), Mansehra, Kaghan Valley between Balakot (approx. 34 35 N, 73 20 E) and Babusar Pass, July-Sept., Jhen Abel (BM), Paya, ± 3,000 m, Muqarrab Shah & Jamshed 38 (ABD), B-8 Kashmir, Pahalgam, ± 7,000 ft, Mrs. M.A. Evershed, no number, no date (BM), Desu reserve among grass, ± 8,500 ft, open meadows among long grass, M.K. Timins 178 (BM), Bringli Village, ± 7,000 ft, F. Ludlow 210 (BM), Tilpatra Forest near Rampur Jhelum Valley, 9,000 ft, Ludlow & Sherriff 7732 (E), Ablan village, c. 7,000 ft, Ludlow & Sherriff K30 (BM).
Distribution: Pakistan, Kashmir, N. India, Nepal.
The species is fairly common in the coniferous forest zone in open sunny places on grassy ground between 2,500 and 3,000 m. It is a beautiful ornamental plant and can be seen in almost every European botanic garden.
Potentilla nepalensis Hook. is easily distinguished by its dark red flowers, pentafoliolate basal leaves and thick pilose indumentum of the whole plant.