This popular genus contains many species, but Antirrhinum majus is the most popular and useful, its long racemes of many-colored flowers being excellent for filling beds, for decorating the herbaceous borders, or for planting among low-growing shrubs. Their cultivation is easy, as they grow well in any garden soil.
They are easily propagated either by seeds or cuttings, but the simplest way is by sowing a packet of seeds in early March under glass, covering the seeds to the depth of one-eighth of an inch; prick out the young seedlings, as soon as they are fit to be handled, three inches apart in boxes, placing the boxes in a cold frame and shading for a few days. After they are hardened off, they are ready to be planted in their permanent quarters.
The seeds may be sown out of doors, in a sheltered spot, in early Fall, and thinned to six inches apart, or transplanted to where they are to remain, and, if a succession of bloom is desired, another lot may be sown in April and treated as recommended for those sown in Fall.
Erect, hardy perennial herbs, flowering in panicles. The Columbines love a semi-shaded situation, well-sheltered from harsh winds and strong sunshine, preferably under the shelter of low-growing deciduous shrubs. They also do well in the open ground, but under these conditions their flowers lack the delicate tinting of those grown in the light shade; any soil not too heavy, if well drained, will suit them.
Seeds are produced in abundance, and should be sown, covered to the depth of one-eighth of an inch, in the Fall (or as soon as practicable after they are ripe) in a shady place convenient to water; as soon as they are strong enough to be removed, they should be planted where they are to flower.
There are many handsome species including our native species, Aquilegia chrysantha (yellow tinged with red), Aquilegia caerulea from the Rocky Mountains (sky blue) and Aquilegia glandulosa, etc., all of them well deserving a place in our gardens.