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Aquilegia — how to grow from seeds? Rules for planting and caring for flowers at home (105 photos)

Aquilegia or Columbine is a plant that has an airy appearance, with small rounded leaves and tall flower stems that hold flowers above the foliage. Aquilegia bluebells are popular with hummingbirds, bees and gardeners.

Flowers from mid-spring fill the void between the early spring bulbs and the peak garden season. They are associated with wooded gardens, but most of them are widely adapted. Many of the species are native to areas throughout North America, from Canada to Texas.

Most varieties of aquilegia will bloom for at least 4 weeks. They are tougher plants than they seem, but they tend to be short-lived perennials. Their seeds spread by staying in your garden for many years. You can see aquilegia in all its glory in the photo.

Leaves: Flat oval dark green leaves that turn red in autumn.

Flowers: Each hanging, bell-shaped flower has 5 petals that open from the base, surrounded by a collar of 5 large sepals.

Long nectary spurs are directed back from the flowers. The petals and sepals come in different colors and combinations, in shades of light blue, pink, purple, red, white and yellow

Botanical name: Aquilegia

Common name: Columbine or Watershed, or Orliki

Endurance: USDA Frost Resistance Zones 3-9. The species are wildflowers characteristic of many areas of North America.

Sun exposure: They can handle direct sunlight in spring, but need shade in summer.

Mature Size: The size can vary greatly by species. There are varieties of dwarfs, they do not grow higher than 10-15 centimeters than higher varieties, which can reach 1 meter. In general, expect the plants to be about 60 — 90 centimeters (h) x 15 — 30 centimeters (W)

Flowering period: Late spring to early summer. Aquilegia flowers will last from 4 to 6 weeks, depending on the weather.

"Sunshine" is a long flowering with large, fluffy, double pale yellow flowers. (60-70 cm).

"Songbird Mix" — colored flowers; white color paired with shades of blue, purple and purple (60-90 cm).

"Texas Gold" is a dense, thermotransfer hybrid with golden colors.

Aquilegia bertolonii is a bluish-white compact Alpine plant (15-20 cm).

Aquilegia canadensis is a fairly common red and yellow species (30-40 cm).

Aquilegia vulgaris plena — "Black Barlow" — Double, colorless almost black-purple shade (70-80 cm).

Flowers in landscape design

Aquilegia feels natural in wooded and mountain gardens. Their thin fan—shaped foliage is a great contrast to ferns and Hosta, and because they hold their flowers high above the base of the plant, they blend well with other shade lovers such as Hellebore and Dicentra.

You can plant aquilegia in containers, but the flowers need regular watering.

Landing Tips

Soil: Aquilegia adapts, but prefers an acidic soil pH from 5.0 to 6.0.

Planting aquilegia: You can start with seeds or plants. The seeds can be sown in the spring, they need light to germinate, so just press on the surface of the soil and lightly cover the top with soil. Since Columbine is a perennial plant, it will take 2 years from planting seeds for them to bloom.

If you germinate your seeds indoors, they will germinate better with some pre-cooling. Place the seeds in the refrigerator in a plastic bag with moist primer soil, 8-12 weeks before the last frost date. Then cover them and move them to a warmer place.

Aquilegia seedlings should be planted in open ground with a crown at the soil level. Water, funnel and mulch. New plants should be nourished with moisture until they get stronger. You will find out when they start to grow intensively. Even then, keep your plants well watered during dry periods.

Flower care

Watershed plants can succumb to intense sunlight. They don't like this combination of heat and dry soil, mulching will help with this.

Columbine will sow on its own, but new plants may not come up if the summer gets too hot. Plants, as a rule, are short-lived, disappear within 3 years. Cut off the heads in time and save the seeds to sow in autumn or late spring.

Keep in mind that aquilegia varieties are easily pollinated among themselves. If you plant more than one variety, be prepared to see new colors and combinations.

Planting a garden is half the battle. From the day you plant your garden, it will require care to keep your flowers blooming and looking good all summer. On the following pages, we will look at some of the usual routine garden maintenance work that you should familiarize yourself with.

Most flowers benefit from the removal of faded flowers. This is called a "dead head". Flowers that repeat flowering will often wither, this will stop only if the old, dying flowers are removed. If they stay in the garden, they will go to seed and stop producing flowers.

Even many flowers that bloom only once a season benefit from cutting seed bags because the plant invests its energy in strengthening itself rather than producing seeds. A good pair of garden pruners will make a nice, clean cut.

Some exceptions to this rule are plants such as Astilba or ornamental grasses that bloom only once but continue to look attractive with their dried seeds.

Pests and problems

Leaf miners are the biggest problem. They dig tunnels inside the leaves and can quickly make an unpleasant mess. Cutting plants, after flowering, usually removes the problem. Since Aquilegia usually doesn't retell, a haircut is the best way to control insect problems. The leaves will eventually fill up again.

If the leaves of your plant look like someone drew a sinuous line, you have leaf miners. They are the larvae of various beetles, flies, moths and wasps.

An adult lays eggs on a leaf, and the larvae burrow and break through it, feed and leave a transparent trail where they were. If you look closely, you can often see a dark dot at the end of one of the stripes. This is a criminal at work.

If you see a whitish transparent spot, it may also be a leaf miner. The harm from the spotted miner is often mistaken for some type of disease. The photo here is an okra leaf, but many plants are attacked by leaf miners.

Care of sheets

Insecticides are rarely recommended to prevent colonization. Since the damage is mainly cosmetic, the method is to remove the affected leaves. This not only improves the appearance of the plant, but also gets rid of existing miners before they become adults and lay more eggs.

Since the tunnels through all the affected leaves are dead tissue, there is no reason to keep them on the plant. They will not improve in appearance.

If you know that some plant is susceptible to leaf miner every year, you can target adults. Before they lay eggs, spray an insecticide aimed at them in early spring.

There are some systemic insecticides, pesticides that are absorbed by plants and spread throughout all tissues. They are intended for use on leaves, but most of them are quite strong, and some, for example, containing the ingredients acephate or imidacloprid, are prohibited in many areas. Currently, there are no systemic means for non-commercial use used on edible plants without harm.

The best way to control leaf damage is to monitor for symptoms and treat them in advance, instead of removing the affected leaves and preventing further spread.

Photo of aquilegia