Family: Ranunculaceae

Scientific Name: Aquilegia alpina

Common Name: Alpine Columbine

DescriptionAn easy to grow dark blue flowering Columbine for the full sun to semi-shaded areas of the garden.
Pronunciation(ack-wi-LEE-gee-a)
Plant TypePerennials Hardy
Hardiness Zone3-8
SunlightPrefers full sun to semi-shade but I have also seen it growing in fairly deep shade.
Moistureaverage to moist, never dry or soggy
Soil & Siteaverage to moist
Flowersdark blue flowers sometimes with some white, nodding, short hooked spurs that flare to around 2".
Leavesternate, gray-green and deeply divided into three lobes
Dimensions1-3 feet depending on the site, the hotter and drier the shorter the plant, 1-2 feet wide, space around 18-24" on center
MaintenanceAs the foliage gets shabby and leaf minors invade the leaves, cut back the plant. It will respond with fresh foliage and few flowers in the fall. Leaf minors won't kill the plant they just create yellow streaks in the leaves. This Columbine will jump around the garden.
PropagationI have had good success seeding with out stratification but cold stratification is suggested.
Native SiteSpecies plant is a European native of the Swiss Alps & northern Apennines.
Misc FactsThe word Aquilegia stands for eagle in Latin. The flower is a symbol for folly. Maybe because it resembles a jesters hat. Has been used in American gardens since the early 1800's.
Author's NotesThis is one of the easiest of the Columbines I have grown. These have occurred out of no where in my gardens.
Notes & Reference#04-Herbaceous Perennial Plants (Allan Armitage),#55-The Garden Book for Wisconsin (Melinda Myers), #176-Aquilegia (Robert Nord)
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