Thursday, March 06, 2008

Aquilegia Tower Light Blue

I recently posted a rather whiny complaint about how columbines won't grow in my garden; a modest exception is Aquilegia Tower Light Blue, which has seeded about slightly in one spot. I guess if you can only have one columbine in your garden, this is a pretty nice one. Actually I don't much care for the plant habit itself; columbines in general are rather attractive when they first arise out of the ground in spring, but by the time they bloom, and especially later in the dry, dusty late summer, they become somewhat ungainly and "stalky". Well, A. Tower Light Blue actually accentuates that ungainliness, with rather sparse, low-growing foliage and very long stalks with the flowers "towering " over the low plants. I'm not sure why this trait was considered desirable, unless it is that it makes a better cutting plant (but columbines don't last well as a cutting flower). However, the flowers themselves... well, they are quite lovely; double flowers in kind of an old-fashioned dusty lavender, which contrast with the greenish unopened blooms.
So, here it is... my one columbine (assuming it's still there this spring); I'm still suspicious of alien columbine abductors being active hereabouts.

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That is a very interesting columbine. I love the shape of the flower. I have a blue start aquilegia in a pot that I am waiting to see if it will flower. Even if it doesn't I think the foliage is very attractive. Have you tired other columbines to see if they will grow in your garden?
Lots of snow is actually good for Columbines. They usually manage to stay evergreen if they are continuously buried from January to March. I don't have any doubles (yet), I've been to fixated on foliage.
Vanillalotus... the only other columbine I've got is the wild canadensis that pops up as a weed. regular hybrid columbines just disappear on me... wasn't there a mystery show years ago, called "Colubine"?

MMD... i hope your right, though we don't have snow now, rather we have a foot of essentially ice, which can't be good for anything.
Lovely color and form on that columbine!
Connie... it kind of reminds me of a beautiful designer gown.
such a pretty flower
It looks like a hanging "wind chime." Beautiful flower. Is the blossom the same size as the common columbine, or is it the size of the larger hybrid?
Various columbines, singles and doubles used to grow like weeds in my IL garden, hybridizing and self-sowing all over. I can't keep them alive here. This one does have a rather prim and old-fashioned look, Don.
Allan Lacy used to advise cutting the old stalks and leaves out when the plant looked tatty, leaving the small new leaves at the base to grow...he also microwaved the cut foliage for a few seconds to kill the leaf miners before composting it.
I never followed that advice but it apparently stuck in my mind.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose
shady... it's a smaller bloom, maybe just larger than the wild (but much more petalled).
annie... I do cut off the stalks at least; haven't got the ambition to microwave the leaf miners (I think Liz would not appreciate me microwaving bugs in the kitchen).
I have several Aquilegia in my garden. And all do they grow well. I have it very rich sand mould and it seems to comfort this plant very well. I live in Iceland so I don't think you have to do much for these plant to grow. I just throw the seeds to the ground and they come up. Very hardy plant.
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