This genus deserves its lofty names, which mean “eagle” and “dove,” because its intricate flowers have been said to resemble birds in flight. Beyond the symbolism of the flowers, the finely textured, widely varied species possess a gracefulness that is likely to carry you to heights of enjoyment. Whether delicate dwarfs or bold, long-spurred varieties, Columbines are characterized by fernlike three-lobed leaves. They are best suited for naturalizing in a semishaded woodland, but the smaller species will thrive in a rock garden with some shade.
Traversing the subalpine meadows of Europe’s Alps and Apennines mountains, this tall arresting species flaunts nodding dark purple blooms with short spurs and prominent yellow stamens that stretch well beyond the rich-as-velvet nearly black petals. Strong lanky stems anchor the mesmerizing blooms, while the handsome glaucous greenery provides contrasting foliar hues for Hakonechloa m. ‘Aureola’ and Lysimachia ‘Aurea’.
Blooms April–early June
Size: 18" – 20" high x 12" wide.
Hardy to zone 3.
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Other selections in this genus:
- Aquilegia buergeriana ‘Calimero’
- Aquilegia canadensis ‘Pink Lanterns’
- Aquilegia chrysantha ‘Denver Gold’
- Aquilegia chrysantha ‘Yellow Queen’
- Aquilegia flabellata ‘Blue Angel’
- Aquilegia ‘Kristall’
- Aquilegia rockii
- Aquilegia sibirica
- Aquilegia vulgaris plena ‘Ruby Port’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘Blue Barlow’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘Leprechaun Gold’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘William Guiness’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘Woodside Gold’