This tall and elegant flower has for generations been referred to as the stately lady of the English cottage gardens, with some growing to a massive height of more than six feet! Being a perennial, she comes and goes in a wonderful array of tints tones and shades of white, blue, purple, red, pink and yellow.
Did you know that some have white or black centres which are referred to as ‘bees’?
This plant is native to the Northern Hemisphere and the high mountains of tropical Africa. There are around 300 species which actually belong to the Ranunculaceaeor Buttercup family.
You might know the lady Delphinium by her other name which is Larkspur - a title shared between perennial Delphinium species and annual species of the genus Consolida.
In Ancient Greek the flower was called Delphis or little dolphin because of the oblong shaped petals. Pedanius Dioscorides, Greek physician to the Roman Army wrote, ‘all parts are poisonous to man and animal and are best left to stand alone’.
Asked about his favourite flower, Prince Charles said:
‘I have an absolute passion for delphiniums and I’ve always had it. For me the magnificent gloriously apparelled delphinium with its impeccably bearing and massed in platoon, holds pride of place in my botanical affections’.