Columbine is a beautiful wildflower that can be found growing in nearly every state, though the exact species will vary.
Each spring, columbine produces delicate, nodding flowers that look almost like a pointed crown. The flowers can be blue, purple, pink, white, or red.
Here in Florida, our native red columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) grows naturally in just three counties in the panhandle, mainly in rocky woodland areas. The delicate red and yellow flowers attract hummingbirds, bees, butterflies, and hawk moths.
If you live in North Florida, why not try growing this lovely plant in your own garden? It's easy to start the native red variety from seed, and it will reward you later by attracting hummingbirds. Plant this shade-loving perennial in well-drained, even sandy, soil in fall and winter. They do best with regular irrigation, but don't keep them wet. You'll need some patience, as it might take two seasons before you see flowers.
You can also purchase one of the improved hybrids available at garden centers. These are often showier than the native variety and can spice up a spring container garden.
- Common Native Wildflowers of North Florida
- Native Woodland Wildflowers Herald the Coming of Spring (PDF)