THE DARK COLUMBINE
Aquilegia atrata has perhaps the darkest, mysteriously, closest to black flowers in all the wonderful Aquilegia worls.
Because of it’s deepest, velvety burgundy-black colouring.
Aquilegia atrata blooms prolifically from spring into summer.
And is noted for blooming later than most other members of the family.
So it is especially useful for the glorious, unusual colour of course.
But also for extending the season of Columbines in the garden.
Aquilegia atrata forms a hardy, evergreen perennial clump.
It is frost hardy and can tolerate severe frost down to below -20C.
And it is also heat hardy.
It can also tolerate some dry once established. Particularly when it is given some shade, which is it’s natural habitat. There it can happily grow untended.
Plant Aquilegia atrata in Shade to ½ Shade for preference.
Because it naturally dwells amongst trees and shrubs or on the edge of scrub clearings.
However it can tolerate Full Sun in cooler climates. Particularly if it is well mulched for the summer.
Perennial clump approx. 80cm High in long spurred flower x 30cm Wide attractive foliage clump.
SEED SOWING ADVICE:
Sow Aquilegia atrata at any time indoors in punnets, or scatter directly in garden in autumn and winter.
Aquilegias germinate easily in the garden after winter chilling.
INDOORS: Sow the seeds in a punnet on the surface of good quality seed raising mix.
Because these seeds need light to germinate, so barely cover the seeds with sieved mix.
Now thoroughly moisten the sown punnet.
And place in a warm, well-lit position (not in any direct sun).
Temperatures of 15- 20C. are ideal for rapid and optimum germination.
Now continue to keep moist by misting with a spray water bottle.
Seeds germinate in 10-30 days.
However if there is no germination in 4 weeks, then it means the seeds have entered their natural dormancy.
So cling-wrap the moist, sown punnet and keep it in fridge (not freezer) for 4-6 weeks.
Then return to the well-lit position at 15-20C.
Seedlings may begin to germinate in 10 days.
But do not discard the punnet as some seeds will continue to germinate for up to 30-90 days.
And this is perfectly natural for this plant.
SEED COUNT: 35 seeds per pack approx.
(We always aim to exceed the stated seed count and give a generous serve).
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