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Wild Columbine Aquilegia canadensis

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
ah-kwih-LEE-jee-ah kan-ah-DEN-sis
Description

Columbine is an easy plant to grow because it adapts itself to a wide variety of conditions; however, it grows best in moist, rich, well-drained soil with light shade. These 1 to 3 foot high plants generally begin blooming in early to mid-May and often continue blooming through June. For the nature lover, columbines are a favorite flower for hummingbirds.  The native columbine is perfect for shady gardens, where it is not nearly as disfigured by leaf miner as non-native species. They also make an excellent addition to the rock garden. 

Columbines tend to lose vitality after 3-4 years and are best replaced at that time. Plants should be set out in the garden in spring or late summer. Plant them one to two feet apart with the crown at soil level. Once established, feed them monthly with a soluble all purpose (5-10-5) fertilizer and keep them well watered during growing season.

The native columbine is perfect for shady gardens, where it is not nearly as disfigured by leaf miner as other species of columbine; attracts moths and butterflies; grows from a thin, woody rhizome. 

Insects, Diseases, or Other Plant Problems: This species has very good resistance to leaf miner which often causes severe damage to the foliage of many other columbine species and hybrids.

Cultivars:
Tags:
#hummingbirds#red#butterflies#yellow#pollinators#partial shade#spring#perennial#native plants#wildflowers#showy#spring flowers#apvg#ncemgva2018#cpp#deer resistant
Cultivars:
Tags:
#hummingbirds#red#butterflies#yellow#pollinators#partial shade#spring#perennial#native plants#wildflowers#showy#spring flowers#apvg#ncemgva2018#cpp#deer resistant
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Aquilegia
    Species:
    canadensis
    Family:
    Ranunculaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    North America
    Distribution:
    NC
    Wildlife Value:
    The flowers are very attractive to hummingbirds and other pollinators.  The seeds may be eaten by songbirds.  Hummingbirds are the primary pollinators.  It is highly resistant to damage from deer.
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Enhancement
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herb
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Wildflower
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Erect
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3b, 3a, 4b, 4a, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Pink
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Tubular
    Flower Description:
    The Columbine features drooping, spurred, bell-like, 1-2", red and yellow flowers (red sepals, yellow-limbed petals, 5 distinctive red spurs and a mass of bushy yellow stamens). Its spurs point upward.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    The Columbines leaflets are oval with rounded lobes, basal and alternate on the stem with one to three times compound with three divisions each. They have slender, much-branched stems. Its delicate, biternate foliage is somewhat suggestive of meadow rue (Thalictrum) and remains attractive throughout the summer as long as soils are kept moist.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Coastal
    Naturalized Area
    Walkways
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Cottage Garden
    Fairy Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Moths
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer