Stunning Columbine Garden Plants
With soft-mounding scalloped leaves and delicate blossoms nodding on flower stems, columbine garden plants are appropriate for borders, cottage gardens or naturalizing wooded areas. Columbine garden plants aren’t too particular about soil as long it’s well draining and not too dry. While they enjoy full sun in most areas, they don’t like it very hot, especially during summer. Therefore, in warmer areas like the south, grow them in partial shade and give them plenty of mulch to help keep the soil moist. Mulch will also help insulate and protect these plants during winter in other regions. Columbines start easily from seed and will readily multiply once established. Columbine flower seeds can be directly sown in the garden anytime between early spring and mid-summer. There’s no need to even cover them as long as they receive plenty of light. Put pre-established plants in the ground at the same time, with the crown placed at soil level. Spacing for both seeds and plants should be anywhere from 1 to 2 feet.
Keep the garden plants moist following columbine planting until well established. Then only weekly watering is necessary with exception to extended periods of drought in which they will require additional watering. Provide a water soluble fertilizer monthly. Regular fertilizing will help produce brighter blooms and thicker foliage. Regular deadheading can also be performed to encourage additional blooming. If self-seeding becomes an issue, both the foliage and remaining seedpods can be cut back in the fall. While some people prefer not to allow them to self-sow, it is often recommended, as columbine garden plants are generally short lived with an average lifespan of about three or four years.