Aquilegia canadense wild columbine Ranunculaceae AQCA; Bx, pb (DeCandido 2001), wv (Yost et al. 1991) (planted); R, h (planted);

   

Aquilegia canadensis (wild columbine) with bud and green fruit.MBGargiullo, Central NJ

Aquilegia canadensis (wild columbine) with bud and green fruit.MBGargiullo, Central NJ

Aquilegia canadense is a perennial, to 2 m (usually less than 50 cm), slender, branched stems often brownish, from a short rhizome, roots associated with VA mycorrhizas (Brundrett and Kendrick 1988). 

Aquilegia canadense (red-columbine) leaf. © 2007 Katy Chayka. Minnesota Wildflowers. minnesotawildflowers.ino

Aquilegia canadense (red-columbine) leaf. © 2007 Katy Chayka. Minnesota Wildflowers. minnesotawildflowers.info (Accessed 8/2017).

Leaves alternate, 2 times compound, leaflets lobed, bluntly toothed, dark green, slightly waxy-pale more so below, basal leaves larger, stalked, upper smaller, stalkless. 

Flowers red and yellow, 3-4 cm, nodding, radially symmetrical but complex structure, 5 red petal tubes forming spurs, center yellow with cluster of protruding stamens, May-June. Visited by bumblebees that collect nectar and or pollen. These include: Bombus fervidusBpennsylvanicusBaffinis and Bvagans (Macior 1968). 

Fruit dry, hollow, 5-parted, elongate about 1.5 cm, capsules joined together, splitting open at tops to release small shiny black seeds. Winter plant pale brown with open, 5-parted fruit husks at tips of branches. 

Wetland status: FAC.

Frequency in NYC: Very infrequent. 

Origin: Native. 

Aquilegia canadensis.Carolyn Moyer Malin.VA.4.28.2016

Aquilegia canadensis.Carolyn Moyer Malin.VA.4.28.2016 (Accessed 4/2016).

Habitat: Usually in rocky, undisturbed woods. Shade tolerant. Has been planted and naturalized in gardens of some parks (Blue Heron).