Featured Plant


Delphiniums are herbaceous perennials, native to much of the Northern hemisphere (including Eastern North America), and mountainous regions of Africa. The name is derived from the Latin term for dolphin, due to their flowers resembling a dolphin’s tail.

Available in shades of pink and purple, white, and almost red, it is the brilliant shades of blue that delphiniums are most famous for. While there are dwarf hybrids (growing to 18 inches), the towering 5 to 6 foot varieties, when in bloom, are the stars of the garden.

Delphiniums prefer a sunny location in rich soil and are ideal for the back of the garden border. Taller varieties require staking as strong winds, heavy rain, and hail will snap the flower stalks. Installing large tomato cages as the plants emerge in spring will save a ton of work later.

All parts of the plant are toxic. This toxicity does lend some protection from deer. Despite this toxicity, butterflies, bees and moths are all attracted to the spires of tubular flowers.

Delphiniums can be found in the Shirley Richardson Butterfly Garden at the Zoo, and the English Garden at Assiniboine Park, putting on their impressive show beginning in early July.