Saw the swallowtail seed site -- looking for ornamental grass seed. Stopped to look at the flowers...saw the many columbines offered... I think this will be my new favorite flower. Easy to grow, deer and rabbit resistant, self seeding and all colors, heights and shapes. There is even a new black for 2012. Just beautiful!! What do you think about this flower? Any negatives?
For me, the "self seeding" part. They will come up everywhere. Not hard to pull up, but the sheer quantity can be daunting!! Still, I grow them in several areas because they are so pretty. I have native stands that are beautiful in early spring.
Do the seeds come true after the escape into other areas? I plan on ordering a bunch of different types and wonder how far apart I should plant so no mixing of seeds. I did read that the plants self seed readily - I have spots in mind where that won't be a big deal. I can't seem to grow dalhia or aster (various reasons) and these colors and shapes make me feel less bad about that.
Re: self seeding...
Columbines are notoriously prone to hybridisation, however some varieties are fairly stable ('Nora Barlow' and 'Mrs Scott Elliott', for example.
My strategy was to buy a couple of packets of mixed Aquilegia seeds from Chiltern Seeds from which I obtained over 70 plants. I have planted them out and then will ditch (or plant in the wild garden) all those that are not to my liking.
that is a great idea. but it seems to me that before we know it --the seeds are ripe and have sowed before we can catch. I will look for those two varieties and so no have to worry about getting out for the big seed roundup before it is too late.