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 trim dwarfs or fancy long-spurred varieties, Columbines are characterized by fern-like 3-lobed leaves. They are best suited for naturalizing in a woodland with dappled light, however the smaller species will thrive in a partially shaded rock garden.
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, which 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 macra ‘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 olympica
- Aquilegia rockii
- Aquilegia sibirica
- Aquilegia vulgaris plena ‘Ruby Port’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘Blue Barlow’
- Aquilegia vulgaris var. stellata ‘Green Apples’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘Leprechaun Gold’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘William Guiness’
- Aquilegia vulgaris ‘Woodside Gold’