Crimson Columbine

Aquilegia formosa

Crimson Columbine

Color: Red and yellow

Common name: Crimson Columbine

Latin name: Aquilegia formosa

Family: RANUNCULACEAE

Height: 8-31 inches

Description: The red or orange spreading outer parts of the 2-inch flower are sepals, and the yellow inner parts are the true petals.

Leaf: Generally undivided or unbranched to deeply 3-lobed

Crimson Columbine with stalk

Range: California Floristic Province (except Great Central Valley, South Coast, Channel Islands), Great Basin Floristic Province, Desert Mountains
Habitat: Streambanks, seeps, moist places, chaparral, oak woodland, mixed-evergreen or coniferous forest.
Elevation: < 3300 m.
Flowering time: Jul

Notes: The petals bear spurs that attract the plant's pollinators, the Sphinx moths. Hummingbirds are also attracted to it in gardens. The flowers are edible, with a sweet taste — though the seeds can be fatal if eaten. Aquilegia formosa, a dicot, is a perennial herb that is native to California and is also found elsewhere in North America and beyond. Distribution outside California: to Alaska, Montana, Baja California. Photographed using a Canon EOS 10D in June 2004.

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