Rick’s Native Plant of the Month | Red columbine (Aquilegia canadensis)

April 12, 2023

By Rick Bogusch

Bridge Gardens

One of the easiest and showiest of native wildflowers, red columbine features large, drooping, lantern-like flowers, red (or salmon pink) and yellow with long, nectar-filled spurs. These dangle from stems, 2-3 feet tall, from late April into May.

Red columbine is easily grown in any soil, as long as it’s well-drained and thrives in either partial shade or full sun. Moist soil and open woodland keep its attractive foliage fresh and blue-green all season.

Great for naturalizing, woodland gardens, borders and cottage borders, columbine self-sows easily and can form large colonies. Hummingbirds and butterflies find its flowers especially attractive and nutritious.

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