Delphinium nudicaule

red larkspur

Habit: this dainty perennial produces long, erect, stringy thin stems with few leaves. Leaves, mostly formed at the base of the plant, have 3-5 lobes with softly toothed margins. The tubular flowers that bloom from early spring to early summer are reddish orange with some having yellow tips.

Ecology: found along stream banks, near seasonal springs and on wet rocky slopes up to 8500 ft (2600 m).

Growing Conditions: full sun to part shade preferring dry rocky well-drained soil. Tolerates heavy soils.

Differing from other delphiniums that are pollinated by bumblebees, Delphinium nudicaule are most often pollinated by hummingbirds. The flowers evolved to stay more tubular, resembling unopened flowers of other delphiniums and rather than a blue color, the flowers are red. All parts of the plant are poisonous if ingested.

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Type: Herbaceous Perennial
Height: 18-24 in (45-60 cm)
Width: 12-24 in (30-60 cm)
USDA Zones: 7-10
Map courtesy of USDA-NRCS Plants Database.