61 Columbine Plant Facts: Learn More About The Pretty Flowering Plant! | Kidadl

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61 Columbine Plant Facts: Learn More About The Pretty Flowering Plant!

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Columbines are delicate, multi-colored flowers growing on tall, slender stalks that attract bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies.

You can call these granny's bonnet, columbine, or bee's cap. They belong to the Aquilegia genus of the family Ranunculaceae, which comprises about 70 species of perennials that are native plants to North America. 

Columbines have attractive, dark green foliage; and small, rounded leaves with five petals and five sepals. Perennial columbine flowers come in many colors like red, yellow, white, blue, pink, salmon, purple, pale blue, and pale yellow, and are sometimes bicolored with different colored sepals and petals.

Do you find this article interesting? Then check out other articles on cotton plant facts and coffee plant facts here on Kidadl.

Facts About The Columbine Plant

Columbine comes from the Latin word columba, which means dove, due to the plant's appearance as multiple long-tailed doves huddled together for warmth. The Latin name Aquilegia, derived from the word aquila, refers to the eagle, i.e., the flower's five spurs at the back, resembling an eagle claw. Keep reading for more amazing facts about columbine plants.

In Christianity, columbine flowers represent the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: knowledge, counsel, wisdom, understanding, fortitude, piety, and fear of the Lord. Columbine flowers also symbolize wisdom, strength, and happiness. The three-part leaves around the base are linked with the trinity of God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.

With the right environment and fertile soil, these plants often spread quickly by themselves through self-seeding; they grow easily from seeds that spill out of chalice-like pods which are transported in the breeze. Due to crossbreeding, these plants often produce colorful flowers different from the parent plant. Columbine plants are considered the easiest to grow and spread as they are self-sown and bloom young, but they are very short-lived perennials. Seedlings of columbine plants bloom in place of their parent plants, so if you have this plant in your garden, you will almost always have flowers. If not kept isolated, these plants quickly hybridize.

Bird watchers plant these in their garden to attract hummingbirds, as these blooms resemble the jester's cap. These are herbaceous, airy, perennial plants with attractive foliage that is clover-shaped. In the Rocky Mountains, the columbine plant type called Aquilegia caurulea has grayish-green colored, fern-like foliage.

The Columbine Plant's Ideal Growing Conditions

The columbine plant has brightly colored, distinctive flowers with their five-petal, pouchlike extension and long spurs containing nectar.

These plants are natives of America, Asia, and even Europe. They are native to temperate climates. Moreover, they are perennials found in rock gardens, meadows, and woodlands. A. vulgaris is the common European columbine variety that grows 18-30 in (45-75 cm) tall along woodland edges and roadsides. In contrast, the wild variety A. canadensis is from Canada.

During their growing season in spring and summer, these plants grow in hardiness zones of around three to nine. They grow around 2 ft (60 cm) tall. This plant grows best in well-drained and moist soil with a pH range between 6.0 to 7.0, i.e., slightly acidic to neutral, with partial sun or dappled shade. These plants can grow in almost any habitat from mountains to deserts, with partial or full sunlight. They have an average water requirement and are low maintenance.

Facts About The Columbine Flower

The state flower of Colorado is the Rocky Mountain columbine, as it is a wildflower that is native to the state.

This flower has different meaning and symbolism depending on its color. Let's check out the meaning of the different colors of columbine flowers.

When put in a bouquet, the orange columbine flower is associated with high energy, joy, and warmness. The orange adds happiness and liveliness to a bouquet. The blue flower symbolizes hope for healing and recovery and encourages peacefulness and calmness. Pink is considered ideal for conveying love in a non-romantic way, along with grace, happiness, and youthfulness. Purple is for celebration, success, and accomplishments, and is all about royalty, luxury, and wealth. Red is associated with intense emotion, romantic love, encouragement, and strength. White symbolizes peace, commonly given to soothe grief or to celebrate anniversaries. Yellow symbolizes positive feelings and joyfulness, ideal for giving to friends and co-workers.

In the past, some sects of Christianity associated columbine flowers with the purity of the Virgin Mary. In ancient Greek, columbine flowers were associated with Aphrodite, the goddess of love, and associated with Venus in Roman culture. This plant serves as a portal between worlds according to a Celtic belief.

They belong to the Aquilegia genus of the family Ranunculaceae

Caring For A Columbine Plant

Many species of wildflowers are toxic to humans and animals, with the highest concentration of toxicity present in roots and seeds. However, the leaves and columbine flowers are edible and are used as flavoring for salads and tea substitutes.

This plant has deep roots, so it's not easy to uproot and divide. To divide this plant, it needs to be cut with a sharp instrument deeper near the roots. The plant then needs to be pulled without breaking the soil ball and quickly replanted in the garden. Propagation or growth promotion via ripened seed pod is easy; in winter, you need to store the seeds, then plant them in the garden the following spring.

Seeds need a three to four week cold spell before germination, so refrigerate seeds before sowing, then plant seeds in moist soil in a warm, indoor location. Usually, it takes around two years for blooming. When a seedling forms a pair of true leaves and the plant reaches 3-4 in (7-10 cm) tall, transplant it outside. Insecticidal soaps and oils help in reducing leaf miner disease in these plants.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 61 columbine plant facts then why not take a look at are rabbits nocturnal or cacao plant facts.

Written By
Sridevi Tolety

Sridevi's passion for writing has allowed her to explore different writing domains, and she has written various articles on kids, families, animals, celebrities, technology, and marketing domains. She has done her Masters in Clinical Research from Manipal University and PG Diploma in Journalism From Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. She has written numerous articles, blogs, travelogues, creative content, and short stories, which have been published in leading magazines, newspapers, and websites. She is fluent in four languages and likes to spend her spare time with family and friends. She loves to read, travel, cook, paint, and listen to music.

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