Updated: October 4, 2022

Columbine plants (Aquilegia) are a beautiful addition to any garden. They are known for their unique, bell-shaped flowers that come in a variety of colors. If you are interested in growing columbine plants, you may be wondering how to propagate them. Propagation is the process of creating new plants from existing ones. In this article, we will discuss how to propagate columbine plants the right way.

When to Propagate Columbine Plants

The best time to propagate columbine plants is in the spring or fall. During these seasons, the plant is not actively growing, but the soil is still warm enough to encourage root development. It is important to avoid propagating columbine plants during a hot summer or freezing winter.

Propagating Columbine Plants by Seeds

Propagating columbine plants by seeds is one of the easiest methods. Here are the steps:

  1. Collect seeds from an existing columbine plant. Wait until the seed pods turn brown and start to split open.
  2. Remove the seeds from the pod and let them dry for a few days.
  3. Fill a seed tray with potting soil and sprinkle the seeds on top.
  4. Cover the tray with plastic wrap to create a greenhouse effect.
  5. Place the tray in a warm, bright location but out of direct sunlight.
  6. Keep the soil moist, but not too wet.
  7. After a few weeks, you should see sprouts emerging from the soil.
  8. Once they have grown large enough, transplant them into individual pots or your garden bed.

Propagating Columbine Plants by Division

Another method for propagating columbine plants is by division. This method works best for mature columbine plants that have been growing for a few years and have multiple stems or crowns. Here are the steps:

  1. Dig up the columbine plant in early spring or fall.
  2. Gently pull apart the stems or crowns, ensuring that each division has healthy roots attached.
  3. Replant the divisions in well-draining soil and water thoroughly.
  4. Keep the soil moist and protect the newly transplanted divisions from direct sunlight for a few days.

How to Care for Newly Propagated Columbine Plants

Newly propagated columbine plants require special care to ensure their success. Here are some tips:

  1. Water them regularly but avoid overwatering.
  2. Provide them with a balanced fertilizer to encourage healthy growth.
  3. Protect them from direct sunlight for a few days after transplanting.
  4. Once they have established, treat them like any other columbine plant.


How often should I water newly propagated columbine plants?

Newly propagated columbine plants require regular watering, but they also need well-draining soil to prevent root rot. Water them when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch.

How long does it take for a columbine plant to bloom?

Columbine plants typically bloom in late spring or early summer, but this can vary depending on the variety and growing conditions.

Can I propagate columbine plants by cuttings?

While it is possible to propagate columbine plants by cuttings, it is not recommended as it is a difficult method and may not result in success.


Propagation is a great way to expand your garden without spending a lot of money on new plants. With these tips, you can propagate your own columbine plants and enjoy their beautiful blooms year after year. Remember to give your newly propagated plants extra care and attention until they have established themselves in their new location.