William Guinness Columbine
Aquilegia vulgaris 'William Guinness'
William Guinness Columbine flowers
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Plant Height: 18 inches
Flower Height: 24 inches
Spread: 18 inches
Hardiness Zone: 2a
Other Names: Magpie
A unique variation of Colombine, featuring deep purlple-blue flowers with yellow centers and highly contrasting white spurs above the dense green foliage mound; visually riveting, this variety is best placed for up close viewing
William Guinness Columbine features showy nodding deep purple bell-shaped flowers with black overtones, yellow eyes and white centers at the ends of the stems from late spring to early summer, which emerge from distinctive black flower buds. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its lobed compound leaves remain green in colour throughout the season. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
William Guinness Columbine is an herbaceous perennial with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other garden plants with less refined foliage.
This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and should be cut back in late fall in preparation for winter. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;
William Guinness Columbine is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- Rock/Alpine Gardens
- Border Edging
- General Garden Use
- Naturalizing And Woodland Gardens
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
William Guinness Columbine will grow to be about 18 inches tall at maturity extending to 24 inches tall with the flowers, with a spread of 18 inches. Its foliage tends to remain dense right to the ground, not requiring facer plants in front. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 5 years.
This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It does best in average to evenly moist conditions, but will not tolerate standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America.
William Guinness Columbine is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden. Be aware that in our climate, most plants cannot be expected to survive the winter if left in containers outdoors, and this plant is no exception. Contact our experts for more information on how to protect it over the winter months.