Hardy, spring-flowering perennial
Description: Showy, distinctly spurred, double blossoms ranging in color from deep purple and blue to pink and white
Habit: Grows 18 to 24 inches high and 18 inches wide
Culture: Prefers partial shade and rich, well-drained garden loam
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 through 8
Attributes: Deer and Rabbit Resistant
European columbines have been grown in British gardens since at least the 14th century, and Gerard's 1597 description of the double variety still applies: "The flowers hereof be very double, that is to say, many of those little flowers (having the form of birds) are thrust one into the belly of another, some-times blew, often white and otherwhiles of mixt colours". Both single and double forms were grown in America before 1700, and it is likely that Thomas Jefferson had both types since he included "Columbines" in an undated list of cultivated flowers. Philadelphia nurseryman Bernard McMahon listed "Double Columbines, of colours" in his 1804 broadsheet.