Aquilegia caerulea, or Columbine, is a well-known and popular perennial that is very attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds. The foliage is lacey looking and bluish green in color. This mix has large 4 inch blooms in shades of red, blue and yellow. The bloom season is late spring through the first of summer, and after the blooms are spent, cut the plant back, and the foliage still adds and attractive ground cover. Columbines prefer full sun to partial shade and rich well-drained soil. Start the seeds directly outside in a sunny location after danger of frost has passed. Use 3 - 4 seeds per plant and space them about 16 inches apart, press the seed into soil but do not cover it and keep the seed moist. With a temperature range of 65 - 70F, germination is usually within 21 days. In areas with a late spring, the seed can be started indoors 6 - 8 weeks before the last frost is expected and transplanted outside when frost danger has passed.
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