A Flower Easily Grown

Welcome to Colleen’s Corner. This is a column meant for fun and some information About myself: I am Colleen Fielding, a Freelance Photographer you often see me on the side of the road  or in various places taking photos of different things animals, birds, places, people etc.  l have lived in Lumby just over 8 years,you have seen my photos in the newspaper (Lumby Valley Times) and once in awhile in the Vernon Morning Star, and the Lumby Art Gallery. Photography is my passion. Disclaimer:  The information on some of my photos that I write about a lot of times come from the Internet or books I research them, hopefully the facts are as close to the truth as I can come.

Here is a dainty looking flower, but actually fairly hardy called Columbine, that has over 60 species, and if the Hybrids are included in the count, then there are so many more. It comes in a huge variety of colors, Reds, Purples, Yellows, Pinks,  Whites etc. I have one of the plants and it is bi-color, some of the colors  on one plant are a Dusty Rose, while the other one is a light Purple, so pretty. 

  Columbines  which are from the Buttercup family have many different names: Aquilegia, Rocky Mountain Columbine, European Columbine, Granny’s Nightcap.   

The Latin name for Columbine is Columbia this word means Dove-Like.

The name Aquilegia in Latin means Eagle, as the petals can look like Eagle Talons.

Columbines are perennial, and  can be seen growing in Woodlands, Meadows, Rock Gardens, Containers, and in My Gardens. They are drought tolerant plants, blooming from late spring into early summer. They are bell shaped, they smell great, and the Hummingbirds love them, especially the Red colored ones.

They are very easy to grow from seed, although you have to wait about a year for them to grow from seeds, but don’t worry as almost all  stores that sell plants usually have a good supply of Columbine. They like cool weather, partial shade, and some fertilizer, with well drained soil. They have different sizes, some are smaller plants, some are larger, I have both. They can grow between 1-3 feet high, and about 1-2 feet wide.

Years ago the Native Americans had used Columbine for it’s properties of healing to help with Heart issues, and if someone had a Fever.

Although some people say you can eat the Columbines you must be careful as it can be a toxic plant if ingested, it can cause diarrhea, and vomiting. Columbines are very toxic to Horses when ingested, it can cause Respiratory Distress, Behavioral Changes, and even Death, so be sure to keep the Horses from eating any type of Columbines.

When the Columbines season is over, cut the stalks that are left down to the ground, you will see them again in the late Spring.

Columbine is the National Flower of Colorado.

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