Spring is creeping into summer here at Old Vines. (My measuring stick for “when it is summer” is when the damned tomatoes need to be staked. I abhor that task, yet still do it willingly.)

So, Blogosphere. Please disabuse me of a misconception I (think I) have. Pictured here are the descendants of some hybrid columbines that I grew from seed some ten years ago or so; they made it into one of two buckets of perennials that I brought down from my Minnesota garden. Is it true that Aquilegia vulgaris, the European columbine, lacks the long “tails” that you see on these, and that they lack them because Europe does not have hummingbirds? If so, then I am going to have to revisit my Euro-idolatry.

My favorite columbines are the wild ones native to this country: Aquilegia canadensis and A. caerulia, or “tall reddish stringy one that self-seeds” and “beautiful low blue one I can’t grow for my life.”

2 responses to “Columbines

  1. You know, El, the hummers never go after the lt. lavender columbine that’s all over our dooryard… i thought they couldn’t see it, now I think it’s because it’s the European cultivar. Huh.

    Luckily, the others will be coming into bloom soon.

  2. Marie (FKA Piana Nanna)

    I wish I would have studied mine closer. I don’t know what they are but you can see them on my May 15th post. It doesn’t look like they have tails and the hummingbirds love them.

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