Alphabetical Plant Listing

Aquilegia chrysantha (Golden Columbine)

Golden Columbine, Golden-Flowered Columbine, Yellow Columbine, Southwestern Yellow Columbine


A popular garden columbine, Aquilegia chrysantha (Golden Columbine) is a vigorous, clump-forming perennial boasting masses of handsome, bright golden-yellow flowers, up to 3 in. across (7 cm), with long, swept back spurs and a bouquet of yellow anthers. Held erect rather than nodding, they rise on long stems above the bushy foliage of divided and fern-like, rich emerald green leaves and bloom for weeks with peak blooms varying from late spring to late summer. The blossoms are pollinated by moths, butterflies, and bees. Prized for its showy flowers, relatively long blooming period, and fine-textured foliage, this southwestern US native is perfect for brightening dark corners of shade gardens. It is also most dramatic when cascading over a boulder or a wall.

  • Grows up to 3-4 ft. tall (90-120 cm) and 1-2 ft. wide (30-60 cm). Will self-seed readily in good garden soils if flowers are not deadheaded.
  • Performs best in light to moderate shade, in fertile, moist, well-drained soils. Golden Columbine tolerates heat and can tolerate a considerable amount of sun. However, in full sun, it can become stressed, with faded leaves. Seriously dislikes poorly drained soils. May go dormant during drought, but minimal moisture and adequate shade can prevent this.
  • Attracts bumblebees and butterflies, but is ignored by rabbits and deer!
  • Easy to grow, this plant is a welcomed addition to beds and borders, cottage gardens, shade gardens or naturalized areas. Makes good cut flowers!
  • Keep an eye out for aphids, powdery mildews and Aquilegia downy mildew.
  • May be grown from seed sown directly in the garden in spring (after danger of frost has passed), late summer or early autumn.
  • Remove flowering stems after bloom to promote additional bloom. Cut back after flowering.
  • Native to Texas, New Mexico, Utah, Arizona and Colorado.
  • Contact with the sap may irritate the skin.

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Requirements

Hardiness 3 – 8
Heat Zones 1 – 8
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Aquilegia
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' – 4' (90cm – 120cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 18" – 24" (45cm – 60cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Showy
Native Plants United States, Rocky Mountains, Colorado, Utah, Southwest, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas
Tolerance Deer, Rabbit
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Underplanting Roses and Shrubs
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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Picture courtesy of F. D. Richards (Flickr), Goran Bogicevic (Shutterstock)

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 3 – 8
Heat Zones 1 – 8
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Aquilegia
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' – 4' (90cm – 120cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 18" – 24" (45cm – 60cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Showy
Native Plants United States, Rocky Mountains, Colorado, Utah, Southwest, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas
Tolerance Deer, Rabbit
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Underplanting Roses and Shrubs
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Aquilegia

Guides with Aquilegia

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