Columbines, Aquilegia, Paraquilegia & Semiaquilegia

Aquilegia pumilla Alba

Genetic purity cannot be guaranteed with a species that has been bred and cultivated for centuries. The above Aquilegia flabellata is an alpine species found in Japan and the Kurile Islands. (Flabellata means fan-shaped)

Columbine Growing Tips

  • A porous soil is better than hard clay but Columbines grow in most soils preferring alkalinity.
  • Columbines like partially shady spots, and may be happy planted under leafy trees.
  • With long tap roots, they establish themselves where they are planted, so they may be difficult to move after a couple years.
  • Plants are hardy and do not require extra fertilizer.
  • Columbines are relatively pest and disease free but aphid attacks may need treatment

Columbine Features

  • Columbines range from 4″ to 4′ high
  • Columbines last 4 years and more depending on variety. You can extend life expectancy by cutting down flowered stalks prior to seeding.
  • Grow these beauties from seed – a variety pack of columbine seeds will no doubt delight you with the end product. If you are in a hurry you can buy pot grown plants but division of plants is seldom successful.
  • Columbines cross-pollinate readily and willingly so it can be fun growing from your self- collected seed.
  • 65 species are discussed in Robert Nolds book ‘Columbines’

Book Cover

More photos on Growing Aquilegia


One Response to Columbines, Aquilegia, Paraquilegia & Semiaquilegia

  1. Adam May 17, 2010 at 16.03 #

    Nice tips! This site is a great resource!

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