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Prairie Larkspur

Delphinium carolinianum

Other common name(s):

Carolina Larkspur, Blue Larkspur

Family:

Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)

Plant Ecoregion Distribution Map

Central Great Plains, Chihuahuan Deserts, Cross Timbers, East Central Texas Plains, Edwards Plateau, Gulf Coast Prairies and Marshes, High Plains, Southern Texas Plains, Southwestern Tablelands, Texas Blackland Prairies, Western Gulf Coastal Plain
Broken Red Plains, Limestone Plains, Red Prairie
Stockton Plateau
Carbonate Cross Timbers, Eastern Cross Timbers, Grand Prairie, Limestone Cut Plain, Western Cross Timbers
Bastrop Lost Pines, Floodplains and Low Terraces2, Northern Post Oak Savanna, Northern Prairie Outliers, San Antonio Prairie, Southern Post Oak Savanna
Balcones Canyonlands, Edwards Plateau Woodland, Llano Uplift, Semiarid Edwards Plateau
Coastal Sand Plain, Floodplains and Low Terraces4, Laguna Madre Barrier Island and Coastal Marshes, Lower Rio Grande Alluvial Floodplain, Lower Rio Grande Valley, Mid-Coast Barrier Islands and Coastal Marshes, Northern Humid Gulf Coastal Prairies, Southern Subhumid Gulf Coastal Prairies, Texas-Louisiana Coastal Marshes
Canadian/Cimarron High Plains, Llano Estacado, Rolling Sand Plains
Northern Nueces Alluvial Plains, Rio Grande Floodplain and Terraces, Semiarid Edwards Bajada, Texas-Tamaulipan Thornscrub
Canadian/Cimarron Breaks, Caprock Canyons Badlands Breaks, Flat Tablelands and Valleys, Semiarid Canadian Breaks
Floodplains and Low Terraces1, Northern Blackland Prairie, Southern Blackland Prairie
Flatwoods, Floodplains and Low Terraces3, Pleistocene Fluvial Terraces, Red River Bottomlands, Southern Tertiary Uplands, Tertiary Uplands

Plant Characteristics

Growth Form

Herbaceous

Height

1
to
3
ft.

Spread

0.25
to
0.5
ft.

Leaf Retention

Deciduous

Lifespan

Perennial

Habitat and Care Requirements

Soil Type(s)

Calcareous

Light Requirement

Sun

Water Requirement

Low

Native Habitat

Grassland

Bloom and Attraction

Bloom Color

White, Blue, Purple

Bloom Season

Spring, Summer

Seasonal Interest

Nectar, Pollen

Wildlife Benefit

Butterflies, Nectar Insects, Moths

Maintenance

Low maintenance, drought tolerant and adapted to a variety of soils. Goes dormant in the summer. Looks nice planted en mass in gardens and wildflower meadows. Larkspurs tend to hybridize and show variations by region. All parts are poisonous to humans and animals. Propagation: Seed.

Comments

Blooms March-July. A slender, upright perennial, with unbranched stems. White-blue, spurred flower appear in a narrow, terminal spike. Leaves are divided and lobed into narrow segments. Basal leaves often form a winter rosette which withers before the flowers open. Seeds are formed dry in a pod. Pollinated by butterflies, moths and nectar insects.

References

1) Griffith, Bryce, Omernick & Rodgers (2007). Ecoregions of Texas. 2) Miller, George O., Landscaping with Native Plants of Texas 2nd Ed., 2013, pg 48. 3) Wasowski and Wasowski, Native Texas Plants Landscaping Region by Region, 1991, pg. 185. 4) https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=DECA3. 5) https://portal.torcherbaria.org/portal/taxa/index.php?taxon=Delphinium+carolinianum&formsubmit=Search+Terms. 6) http://bonap.net/TDC/Image/Map?taxonType=Species&taxonId=20729&locationType=County&mapType=Normal. 7) https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=18547#null.