Beyond Aquilegia Canadensis Are Fantastic Varieties
This enchanting video features Carrie Thomas and the UK National Collection of Aquilegias in Swansea. There are many species of this plant, also commonly known as columbines, and they interbreed so that the range of colors and structures to be seen here is astonishing. In this video we go way beyond Aquilegia canadensis, one of the natives of North America, and even further beyond the miniature Japanese varieties and we are introduced to some stunners.
We are then shown how the hybrid production is controlled, so you can get started doing it yourself!
One of the attractions of these plants with such intricate flowers is that they can be grown just about anywhere and need very little attention. Partial shade is ideal, but they will tolerate full sun. They do not like to stand in very wet ground through the winter however.
Although perennial, the columbines do become a bit straggly after a few years, so by ensuring either self-pollenation or careful specific cross-breeding and then collecting the seeds you can easily grow replacement plants to your liking.
Although they will certainly take you beyond Aquilegia canadensis, the natural self-seeding will generally give you inferior regressive types of plants, so personally, I do not recommend using the self-sown seedlings from beneath the parents.
p.s. I was unaware that the columbine name reflects the way the inverted flower resembles five doves ascending beak-to-beak! Live and learn!