Columbine Flower Gifts

Aquilegia (Columbine; from Latin columba "dove") is a genus of about 60-70 species of perennial plants that are found in meadows, woodlands, and at higher altitudes throughout the Northern Hemisphere, known for the spurred petals of their flowers.


Columbine plants are wild flowers that are part of the buttercup family.

Other Names: Aquilegia, American Columbine, Canada Columbine, Eastern Columbine, Meetinghouses, Rock Bells, Honeysuckle, Rock Lily, Cluckies, Jack-in-Trousers, Wild Honeysuckle, Granny's Bonnets, Dancing Fairies,

Scientific Classification:

Kingdom: Plantae
Class:: Magnoliopsida
Family: Ranunculaceae
Genus: Aquilegia


Descriptions: Columbines have uniquely shaped foliage that can resemble clover leaves, and columbine flowers resemble hooked spurs.

Size: Dwarf varieties of columbine grow 4 to 6 inches tall, while other species can reach 3 feet in height.

Symbolism: In times past, Columbine symbolized foolishness, based on the flower's resemblance to a jester's cap and bells. Later with the emergence of Christianity the flower had contradictory meanings, the the Virgin Mary representing innocense and the holy spirit. Yet, it was considered inappropriate to give a young woman a bouquet of columbine, because of its sexual connotations.

Grow Details: Columbines are known to be woodland plants, so planting in habitats that are similar to a woodland will make growing columbines easier.

Grow Details

Soil Type: Rich Well-Drained Soil
Soil PH: PH 5.5-7
Water: Moist
Light: Light Shade, Part Shade to Full Sun
Grow Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9


Height: Columbine can grow from 4 inches to 3 feet.
Flower Colors: red, yellow, white, blue, pink, purple, bi-colored
Propagation: Propagate via seeds.
Blooming Period: May to June

Type: Biennial or Perennial

Herbal Remedy Properties: The root and the seeds of the Columbine are known to be highly toxic. Despite the toxicity Native Americans used very small amounts of the columbine root as an effective treatment for ulcers. However, the medical use of columbine plants is better avoided due to its high toxicity; columbine poisonings may be fatal.

Native Area: The native area of columbine is remarkably diverse. Most species of columbine are native to the Northern Hemisphere.

Other: The flowers of various species of columbine were consumed in moderation by Native Americans as a condiment with other fresh greens, and are reported to be very sweet, and safe if consumed in small quantities.

Columbines are Colorado's State Flower.

Columbine Gifts

Columbine is a perennial, which propagates by seed. It will grow to a height of 15 to 20 inches. It will grow in full sun, however, prefers growing in partial shade and well drained soil, and is able to tolerate average soils and dry soil conditions.


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