WILD COLUMBINE

Aquilegia Canadensis

Wild Columbine, Aquilegia Canadensis is a native genus that has been referred to as the flower for the masses. Once started, Columbine propagates for years and, although perennial, increases rapidly by self seeding. It is prized for its vibrant red and yellow blooms. This beautiful woodland wildflower has showy, drooping, bell-like flowers equipped with distinctly backward-pointing tubes, similar to the garden Columbines. These tubes, or spurs, contain nectar that attracts long-tongued insects and hummingbirds.

Medicinal uses: The seeds of Aquilegia canadensis or wild columbine were crushed and used by American Indians for headaches, fevers and as love charms. Whole seeds were rubbed into the scalp and hair to control lice. Though some parts of the plant could be toxic in large amounts, red columbine has a medicinal history, too. Native Americans used infusions of the flower to treat heart, bladder, and kidney conditions, and as a remedy for headaches and fevers. It was even turned into a wash to treat poison ivy.

SPECS: Genus: Aquilegia; Species: Canadensis; Plant Type: Wildflower; Life Cycle: Perennial; Sun Exposure: Full Sun, Part Sun; Soil Moisture: Medium Wet, Mesic (middle), Well Drained; Height: 2′ — 3′; Spread: 2′; Plant Spacing: 1′ — 2′; Bloom Time: February — July; Bloom Color: Red, Yellow; Advantages: Pollinator conservation, Pollinators, Showy; USDA Zone: 3 — 8; Attracts: Beneficial insects, Bumblebees, Butterflies, Carpenter bees, Honey bees, Hummingbirds, Long-tongued bees, Small black bees, Sweat bees; Tolerant: Deer, Drought, Dry soils, Rabbits; Plant Community: Plant with Wild Geranium, Foamflower and Wild Ginger.;