Columbine

Columbine

Features

Columbine vulgaris is part of the Ranuncolaceae family and has always been a particularly widespread and exploited plant for its remarkable therapeutic properties.

The main characteristic of this plant, in fact, is represented by the fact that its flowers, which usually begin to appear on the plant during the spring season, are characterized by five sepals that surround as many petals and each forms a particularly long spur and hooked.

The flowers can also boast rather long stems and have a blue-turquoise color, although in nature there are really many hybrids, which are able to bring to the plant, from time to time, a high number of colors.

The name of columbine comes from a Latin word, or "aquilegium", which means water tank and essentially represents the high number of dew droplets that form on the leaves and can be easily collected.

In any case, the columbine species includes more than seventy different herbaceous, rustic and perennial plants.


Cultivation

The plants of columbine they are characterized by being extremely suitable for all those particularly sunny locations, but they also look great in areas of partial shade.

Furthermore, it is always best to be very careful with sunstrokes, as they can cause rapid dehydration of columbine plants.

The soil must always be moist and fresh, well drained and also rather rich in organic substance, perhaps also adding a good soil formed mainly by leaves.

It is a species that is sown rather easily, especially during the spring season, while flowering begins from the second year of life.

This plant can be multiplied by cuttings or even algamic, providing for the division of the tufts.

We must really pay close attention to rust, which can occur during the spring season, with the manifestation of brown spots in the lower part of the leaves: in these cases there are specific products on the market that can adequately and effectively fight dew. .

Another danger for the columbine plant is certainly represented by the larvae of the leaf miners, which are able to considerably damage the plant, since they are able to dig tunnels inside the leaf tissues: even in this case, all this what you can do is buy specific products, in order to effectively fight these larvae.

  • Aquilegia

    The genus of plants called Aquilegia includes different interesting perennial species and varieties, evergreen or deciduous. These are very rustic specimens that grow spontaneously in ...

Curiosity

The columbine plant plays a rather important role in magic, since Native Americans already used it in the form of an infusion for many cures, starting from heartache up to fever and as a remedy to combat poison.

Native Americans, in most cases, pulverized the seeds and rubbed the flour on their hands, in such a way as to use it as a sort of perfume.

Also in Italy there are several legends that accompany the history of this plant: in fact it seems that a sorcerer who had a fixed abode near Lake Como gave birth to the columbine plant, while according to other legends the plant was born from a difficult love story between Princess Teodagne and the prince of Lombard origins Rutibando.

Aquilegia is also extremely related to the sphere of love, since it was essentially used to create or destroy bonds of love.


Columbine: Properties

The toxicity of the columbine plant is particularly high and it is an extremely poisonous plant, given that its content in cardioactive glycosides is very high and we are talking about substances that are able to damage, in particular, the heart and cause cramps, numerous respiratory difficulties and disorders and arrhythmias.

In reality, nowadays, this plant is very little used, especially since it was discovered that all its parts represent toxic substances for the human body.

The naturalists of the past, on the other hand, due to the similarity between the columbine flower and the eagles, gave this plant, obviously incorrectly, particular magical abilities, such as that of making the sight even more acute than that of an eagle.

In the past, columbine was exploited for various properties: for example, it was used to treat various disorders of the nervous system, but also as an antiseptic, astringent, calming and cleansing agent.

It is a plant that was also used to combat scurvy.

In the past, practically all parts of the columbine plant were used, ie seeds, flowers, roots and leaves; moreover, the flowers of Aquilegia vulgaris were consumed in small quantities by Native Americans, who used them as a condiment along with other fresh vegetables.



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