Herbs & Plants

Delphinium caeruleum

Botanical Name: Delphinium caeruleum
Family: Ranunculaceae
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ranunculales
Tribe: Delphinieae
Genus: Delphinium

Common Names: larkspur

Habitat: Delphinium caeruleum is native to E. Asia – Himalayas from Kumaon to Sikkim. It grows in the alpine areas from 2500 to 5000 metres.

Delphinium caeruleum is a perennial plant, growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in). Stem(s) erect or ascending, or much reduced. Leaves basal and/or cauline; leaf blade palmately divided. Inflorescence racemose or corymbose, sometimes only 1-flowered. Pedicels usually 2-bracteolate. Flowers bisexual, zygomorphic. Sepals 5, petaloid and variously colored, upper one spurred. Petals 2, sessile, free, spurred; spur nectariferous. Staminodes 2, each usually with a slender claw and an expanded limb. Stamens numerous; filaments lanceolate-linear, 1-veined; anthers ellipsoid. Carpels 3(or 4–10); ovaries many ovulate. Styles without a distinct stigma. Follicles narrowly oblong, reticulate. Seeds obpyramidal, tetrahedral, or obovoid, narrowly winged along angles, transversely rugose, squamulose winged, lamellate, or concave reticulate

It is in flower from July to August, and the seeds ripen from August to september. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs).


Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.
Prefers a rich well-drained soil that stays moist in the summer. Dislikes water-logged soils, it is liable to die out in heavy soils over winter. Requires an open sunny position. A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby plants, especially legumes.

Through seed – sow March/April in a cold frame or May outdoors. Keep moist and in a shady position until germination takes place. The seed has a limited viability so it should be stored in a sealed container at about 3°c. Temperatures above 15°c inhibit germination. The seed usually germinates in 2 – 9 weeks at 15°c. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer. Cuttings of basal shoots in April/May, taken before they become hollow at the base, and planted in a cold frame. Division in spring or early autumn.

Edible Uses: Not known.

Medicinal Uses: The roots have been used to kill maggots in the wounds of goats.

Other Uses: A parasiticide is obtained from the leaves and roots. It is quite toxic and so is for external use only.

Known Hazards: All parts of the plant are toxic. The plant is most toxic when it is young.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


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