Larkspur (Delphinium consolida) belongs to the buttercup family - Ranunculaceae. Larkspur flowers are almost as complex as the Orchids. The colourful Larkspur blooms cover a spectrum from white to blue to violet. Larkspur Flowers are irregularly shaped and bloom in a loose, vertical grouping along the upper end of the plant's main stalk. Larkspur is actually a very complex flower consisting of both petals and sepals.
Larkspur flowers come in a variety of colours including spikes of red, pink, violet and white. As a result of their generally similar floral structure, as well as the absence of genetic barriers to intercrossing, species of Larkspur are known to hybridise in many different combinations.
Larkspur, with tall spikes, make excellent cut flowers. Two varieties of Larkspur are ideal as cut flowers: Consolida ambigua and Consolida orientalis. The Larkspur Rose (Consolida ambigua) has tall spires of rose-coloured flowers. Larkspur flowers tend to be fragile and relatively short lived in the vase (under 7 days), making production for local markets more lucrative. Larkspur grow to their full potential in climates with cool, moist summers.
The Larkspur plant is toxic. The stem and seeds contain alkaloids. Apparently, domestic sheep are not affected by the toxins in Larkspurs. So, sometimes sheep are used to help eradicate the plant on cattle range.
This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.