How to Plant, Grow and Care For Delphinium Flowers

Are you thinking of growing delphinium flowers, but aren't quite sure where to start? These tall and beautiful perennials are a garden mainstay for flower beds all over the world. In this article, certified master gardener Laura Elsner takes you through everything you need to know about delphiniums and their care.

Blossoming Purple and Blue Delphinium Flower on Tall Plant Stalk

Delphiniums in bloom are the quintessential sign of summer. These cottage flowers have adorned paintings, bouquets, and garden beds for centuries. Their tall perennial flowers in soft colors of stunning blue, cheery pink, or delicate white are unmistakable.

The tall perennial spires of gorgeous color add height to any garden, creating a backdrop when planted in the back. There are dwarf varieties that can be grown in pots or containers to plant in the front where they can be appreciated from a closer distance. Thankfully, there are several varieties you can choose from for either application.

Though there are a few common mistakes gardeners make with delphiniums, they are fairly easy to care for. If you are considering adding these pretty plants to your garden, continue reading and find out how to plant, grow, and care for delphiniums so you can enjoy these glorious garden flowers for years.

Delphinium Plant Overview

Close up of flower clusters growing upward along a tall stem. Each of the flowers has several purple petals surrounding white petals at the center. The background is blurry.
Plant Type Herbaceous Perennial
Family Ranunculaceae
Genus Delphinium
Species sp
Native Area Northern Hemisphere
Hardiness Zone 3-7
Season Summer
Exposure Full-Part Sun
Plant Spacing Variety Dependant
Planting Depth To the Crown of the Plant
Watering Requirements Moderate
Height Variety Dependant, from 1′ up to 6′
Pests Aphids, Slugs, and Snails
Diseases Powdery Mildew, Crown Rot
Soil Type Light, Hummus, Well-Draining
Attracts Pollinators
Plant With Peony, Shasta Daisy, Foxglove, Roses
Bloom Time June to July

Plant History

Close up of tall spires of pink flowers. One flower cluster is at the center and the focus of the image, with two other flower clusters in the blurred background. Each flower is about an inch across and has an outer and inner layer of pink petals that fade to a lighter shade of pink toward the center.
This flower, before opening, resembles the long nose of a dolphin, from which its name comes.

Delphinium were actually named by ancient Greeks. The name comes from the root Delphi which means “dolphin.” It was thought that the flower bud before it opens resembles the long nose of a dolphin. After a quick Google image search, I can confirm this (it was past delphinium blooming season when I wrote this article).

Delphinium is part of the Ranunculaceae, or buttercup, family. There are more than 2000 species of plants that are included in the ranunculaceae family. Other familiar perennials in the buttercup family include columbine, hellebore, clematis, and anemone.


Close-up of the tops of tall vertically growing clusters of blue flowers against a bright blue sky. There is one flower cluster at the center and is the focus of the image, with three other flower clusters in the blurred background. Each floret has five petals that surround an inner layer of smaller white petals. A couple of stems with several small green flower buds growing along the tops, ready to bloom, are also present.
Delphinium elatum has tall spikes of flowers that come in different shades.

There are more than 300 species of delphiniums in existence. The most common species of garden perennials are elatum, grandiflorum, and belladonna. It is important to decide which species of delphinium will suit your needs in the garden.

Delphinium elatum is what I think comes to mind for most of us when we think of delphiniums. They are varieties with tall spikes of flowers that reach up to 6 feet in height.

Delphinium grandiflorum is a delphinium species that is native to China and Russia. If your preconceived notion of delphinium is the long spikes of flowers, you may not immediately classify this species as delphinium. Until you look closer at their distinctive delphinium-shaped flowers. These varieties are much shorter than elatum. They feature fine, almost ferny foliage, and small clusters of delphinium flowers.

Delphinium belladonna is a hybrid of grandiflorum and elatum delphinium (and sometimes other species). They have tall spikes of flowers that delphinium elatum features. But the flowers are looser in the stalk and have more branching stems, like grandiflora delphiniums. Belladonna delphiniums are said to be more heat tolerant than other species.

There are many other species of delphiniums, but these are the three main ones that make up most delphiniums planted by gardeners.


There are many ways to obtain a delphinium plant for your garden. They can be purchased at nurseries, planted by seed, divided, or have cuttings taken. Let’s look further into each of these methods.


Small seedling tray with 12 seedlings growing in soil. The seedlings have long, thin, and fuzzy pale green stems with wide bright green leaves growing at the end of each. The tray sits in a garden of dry soil waiting to be planted.
You can purchase any variety you want from a specialized local nursery.

The easiest way to obtain a delphinium plant is to go to your local garden center or nursery and purchase one. I recommend a specialized local nursery that shows the exact variety so you know exactly what you are going to get.

Some of the larger chain stores may only have ‘delphinium sp‘ on the tag so you do not know the variety. Since there are so many height and color variations in delphiniums, it is nice to know the exact variety you are getting so you will plant it in the right spot.

You can purchase delphiniums at any time during the growing season. You can plant them at any time up to two weeks before the ground in your area freezes. This gives the plant time to establish roots before winter sleep.


Close up of the top part of a plant that has seed pods forming where flowers once grew. The seed pods look sort of like a tulip, wide at the bottom and thin at the top and curve outward. The pods range from light green to brown. The background is very blurry with patches of green, yellow, and brown.
You can buy seeds at a garden center or collect them from delphinium flowers already growing in your garden.

Delphiniums are actually quite easy to start from seed. This is a great way to save money. Some varieties will even bloom the first year they are grown from seed.

You can purchase seeds from the garden center or online. Make sure if you are purchasing them online you buy them from a reputable seed company. There are many fake seeds floating around the internet. 

You can also harvest the seeds from a delphinium plant. You will have to be aware of the variety. Some delphinium varieties are sterile, and some will not come true from seed. This means you will not get the big fancy delphinium that is growing. You will end up with just a plain purple variety.

Start your delphinium seeds about eight weeks before the last frost date in your area. You can do a quick online search to find the approximate date in your specific area.

Steps to Propagate Delphinium by Seeds

Once you have the seed, a great way to achieve higher germination rates is a process called cold stratification. The best way to do this is to simply pop the seeds into the refrigerator for a week or two prior to planting them.

Next, take your seeds and a seed tray. You can purchase a seed tray, or you can use what you have on hand. Berry containers work great. Whatever you decide to use, make sure you poke drainage holes in the bottom that are large enough for excess water to drain out.

Fill the seed tray with a seed starting mix. You can use potting soil, but for delphiniums, I do recommend a sterile seed starting mix since they are prone to damping off which is caused by a fungus in the soil.

Evenly water the seed starting mix. It shouldn’t be soggy or dripping wet. Now place the delphinium seeds onto the dampened soil. Cover the seeds with about ⅛” of the soil. Now place a dome cover over the seeds. Place the containers in a room-temperature area. Check on them regularly. Spray with water if they are drying out.

In about 14-28 the seedlings will emerge. Once they start to emerge, remove the cover and place them in a sunny window or under a grow light. Keep them watered. If they are too spindly and reaching for the light, it is a sign they need more light. Lower the height of the grow lights or find a sunnier window.

Hardening Off

Once the danger of frost has passed in your area it is time to harden off your new seedlings. Don’t skip this step. New seedlings that have been grown indoors have never experienced weather. If you plant them straight into your garden beds they will die.

Start by placing the new plants outside in a shady area. Leave them for a couple of hours then bring them in. Slowly leave them out longer, and then start adding time in the sun.

Start with a couple of hours in the sun and gradually work their way up. After about a week they will be hardy and ready to be planted in your garden.


Close up of several bright green  leaves with jagged edges from a stem cutting planted in soil contained by a round green plastic pot. The sun is shining on the leaves.
Take a leaf and stem cutting, cut off the bottom leaves, and place it in moist potting soil to propagate.

You can take cuttings from a delphinium plant in order to start a new one growing. This is done in early spring just as the delphinium is starting to grow.

When you look at a newly growing delphinium plant you will notice the main clump of plant, but if you look closer you will see some smaller offshoots.

These make great cuttings. Take a clean sharp knife or pair of clippers. You will want to take the cutting from below the soil line. You will see the stem below the soil line is white.

Now take that cutting and trim off most of the leaves. We want the energy to go into root production at this time, it will grow new leaves. Now plant the cutting into some evenly moist potting soil. Keep the cutting in a shady spot and keep it watered until it starts growing roots and is ready to be planted.


Bunch of tangled up roots on the surface of a wooden table. The roots that are closest to the stem are fatter and lighter in color. Most of the roots are dark brown and thin.
Dig up the delphinium in early spring, separate the pieces of the roots, and then transplant it as soon as possible.

Dividing delphiniums is best done in the early spring. Start by digging up your delphinium. Do not dig it right at the base of the plant, dig it wider than the plant so as to not disturb its roots too much. Now you can split off chunks of the delphinium. I generally use the rule of thirds in gardening. You can take ⅔ of the plant and leave ⅓ of the original.

Replant the new delphinium as soon as possible. If you are moving it into a new location in your garden, pre dig the holes before dividing the plant.

Or if you are sharing it with a friend or neighbor, put it in a container with soil and compost until it can be transplanted. Add compost back into the hole with the delphinium. Water all parts of the plant really well.

This can also be done in the fall. Do not disturb delphiniums when they are in bloom or about to bloom. It is also better to divide plants on a cool and cloudy day.


Young plant with root ball lying next to a hole in the soil that is amended with small white particles of perlite. The plant has light green stems topped with wide white green leaves with jagged edges. There is a shovel near the hole where the plant will be planted. A few Ggeen weeds are sprinkled nearby. The evening sun shines down.
Dig a hole twice the width of the container, fill it with compost, and place the delphinium in it.

Choose a good spot to plant your delphinium (read ahead to the how-to-grow section to find that ideal location). Dig a hole double the height and width of the container you are planting.

Fill the bottom of the hole with compost, aged manure, worm castings, or sea soil. Then place the delphinium in the center of the hole. Line up the crown of the plant with the soil line and fill it in with a mixture of compost and the existing soil. Water it well and keep it watered until it starts establishing roots.

How to Grow

Delphiniums are a fairly easy garden perennial to grow. If they are planted in their correct conditions they will bloom beautifully and create quite a show in your garden. Here are what your delphiniums need to make them grow optimally in your garden.


Multiple tall spires of indigo blue flower clusters growing in full sun with bright green foliage in the blurred background. The front most cluster has light purple flowers with dark purple centers.
Delphiniums require full sun for at least 6-8 hours a day.

Delphiniums are full-sun perennial flowers. This means 6-8 hours of direct sunlight. A bit of dappled shade for the strong heat of the afternoon will help them from shriveling too quickly. Especially if you are in a warmer zone. Delphiniums do not like too much heat, they are cool-season flowers.

If your delphiniums are not getting enough sun you will know right away. The blooms and stems will be spindly and leggy. There will be few blooms, and they will have a hard time standing upright.

There will also be an increased chance of diseases like powdery mildew and crown rot. slugs and snails will also feast on the weakened plants.

It is important to remember that a garden is a living being. So planting your delphinium in a sunny spot does not necessarily guarantee it will always be sunny. In 10 years things grow and evolve.

So a once sunny patch of the garden may now be shaded by a large tree that grew up. If your delphiniums are failing, really consider how much sunlight they are actually getting. You may have to move your delphiniums to a new sunny spot in the garden.


Gardener's two hands holding dark brown fertile soil as it slowly pours out of the hands and onto the ground where there is more loose soil. There is more soil and some green plants growing in the blurred background.
This plant needs well-drained and light soil that is rich in organic matter.

Delphiniums require excellent well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. Delphinium will struggle in soils that are lacking nutrients and/or soils that are heavy and full of clay.

To achieve this blend you will need to first assess your soil. I know the type of soil in my area. Where I am from our soil is heavy clay soil. You may already have an idea of what kind of soil you are working with in your area. I am constantly amending soil with coconut coir or peat to make the soil looser.

You can do a quick test on your soil. Simply grab a handful of your garden soil and squeeze it. If the handful of soil squeezes into a tight ball and when you release it, it stays the shape of that ball, you have clay soil. The soil should crumble back to no shape after you release it.

If it does stay a ball, this is where you’ll need to amend with lots of grit. Coconut coir or peat works great. I know it seems adding sand would work, but if you have clay soil and add sand you will end up with concrete.

Now add compost, aged manure, worm castings, or sea soil. This will also help loosen the soil and will add all the nutrients to the soil that your delphinium will need to grow over the season. You can also mulch your delphiniums to help retain moisture and keep the soil loose.


Water shooting out from a fan sprinkler to water several tall vertically growing columns of flowers. These flowers are mostly white with one dark purple column closer to the right and a light pink cluster to the left. Several pink and purple lower growing flowers are at the bottom of the image. The background is dark, green, and very blurry.
Delphiniums prefer frequent and regular watering.

Delphiniums do require frequent and consistent water. But they do not tolerate being left in standing water or soggy soil. This is why it is important to get the soil type right first. If the soil is light it will be able to drain excess water away while absorbing enough water for the delphiniums to thrive.

Make sure to water during dry periods. Delphinium will shrivel and turn brown if they are not getting enough water. Delphiniums that are overwatered will have soft yellowing leaves. They are also more prone to crown and root rot and powdery mildew.

Watering at the base of the plant if possible is best. I use a drip hose snaked through my garden rather than an overhead sprinkler. Overhead watering that leaves foliage wet will make your delphiniums more prone to powdery mildew, and crown rot.

Climate and Temperature

Close up of a white flower cluster growing on a green stem. The flowers are open and wide with soft green centers. Several brown stems are also in the picture. The blurred background is more green and brown stems with a few white flowers.
Delphiniums usually thrive well in zones 3-7.

Delphiniums are cool-season flowers. They can be grown in zones 3-7. There are varieties that can be grown up to Zone 8. Belladonna species of delphinium are more heat tolerant than other species

If you live in a zone higher than 8, consider annual larkspur flowers instead (Consolida).


Close up of a male gardener wearing a white shirt using his two hands to hold dark soil that is amended with organic matter.
It is recommended to fertilize your garden with compost in late autumn.

I don’t tend to fertilize my perennials. Instead, I will top-dress my garden with compost. Ideally, I like to add compost in the late fall, after I’ve cut everything down.

I compost right over the leaves and then the snow will fall on it and melt. This way all the compost nutrients can seep into the soil in the spring. But if you didn’t get around to it in the fall, composting in the early spring works fine too.

In the spring I will sometimes water my perennial bed with compost tea or a sea-derived fertilizer. These are natural products filled with nutrients that will boost your garden.


Several Wide Sky blue flowers growing in clusters along tall green stems attached to stakes for support. Several of the flowers have not yet bloomed and are still in the bud stage. The background is a dark green privacy shrub.
Delphiniums may also need additional support in the form of cages, hoops, or stakes.

Delphiniums require some maintenance to keep them looking great. First, choose a location that offers them some protection from wind and storms if possible. Perhaps along a fence line, or in a garden that has some trees for wind protection.

The first thing to do with delphiniums in early spring is to cage them. You can get hoops, like peony cages, that are tall and the delphiniums can grow into them. You can also stake them later in the season, but I find this tedious and it can be difficult. It is better to get them caged early.

Once the flower has bloomed you can cut back the entire plant. You may get a second flush of flowers late in the season.


This is the fun part. There are so many varieties of delphiniums to choose from that will suit your needs in the garden. Here are a few of my favorites.

‘Cobalt Dreams’

Cobalt Dreams flowers close up. The semi-double flowers are cobalt blue with several smaller white petals in the center. The flowers grow in tall columns along dark green stems. The background is bright and blurry.
This gorgeous delphinium variety produces rich blue, semi-double flowers with a fluffy white bee’s eye.

‘Cobalt Dreams’ is a classic flowering blue perennial. This variety reaches up to 6 feet tall. The semi double flowers are an intense cobalt blue. The center eye, which is called a bee, is fluffy and white. The blue flowers with the white center really stand out, making this variety great for planting in the background of gardens.

‘Delphina Light Blue White Bee’

Flowers that are Light Blue with White Bees or centers growing along a tall green stem. The flowers also have a tinge of lavender to them. Several other light green stems are also growing with flower buds waiting to blossom. The back ground is dark green foliage that is blurred.
This dwarf delphinium variety produces light lavender flowers.

This is a dwarf variety of delphinium. It features ruffled light lavender flowers and a white bee. It only grows 1 1/2′ tall. This variety can be planted in mixed garden beds and borders. It would also look great grown in a container.

‘Magic Fountain White’

Magic Fountain White flowers close up. Each flower has pure white double blooming petals that surround five smaller dark purple petals. The flowers grow at the tip of a long green stem. A small stem with a few small light green flower buds grows next to the flower cluster. The background is sunny, green, and blurred.
This gorgeous white delphinium variety will make a wonderful addition to your flower garden.

This is a medium-height delphinium. It reaches up to 3 feet tall. What is so different about this variety is the color. It is white, with a black center/bee. This one would look great planted along a garden path to brighten it up in the dark.

‘Summer Nights’

Summer Nights flowers close up. Three deep blue flowers with five petals each and a golden brown stamens are in focus. A few more of the same flowers are in the background but they are blurred in with green and yellow foliage.
This dwarf variety produces low clusters of deep blue flowers.

‘Summer Nights’ is a dwarf variety. It only reaches 1′ tall. It doesn’t have the tall spikes of flowers that are often associated with delphinium. Instead, it has clusters of flowers on low ferny foliage. ‘Summer Nights’ is an intense blue color. This variety would look great planted in a cottage or meadow-style garden.

Companion Plants

Delphiniums pair really well with other perennials. They are a great building block to creating a beautiful garden scape. Here are a few perennials that pair wonderfully with delphinium.


Two tall columns of bluish lavender flower clusters growing along dark stems to the right of the image. Several large full blooming pink and white flowers grow lower to the ground and are blurred behind the tall purple flower clusters. Tall green shrubs are also in the blurred background.
Peonies and delphiniums can bloom at the same time, giving your garden amazing colors.

Peonies and delphiniums are a classic combination. Depending on the varieties of both your peony and delphinium, the sun exposure, and your zone, they may bloom at the same time. If not they will bloom in slight succession. Either way, they look great together.

Peonies have lovely foliage that looks great at the base of the delphinium. They may bloom before, in which case you will have gorgeous large peony blossoms in full bloom with lacy delphinium foliage in the background. Then the peonies will fade and the delphiniums will start blooming their darling spikes of delphiniums.

Shasta Daisy

Shasta Daisy flowers with large yellow centers and soft white petals growing lower to the ground and in front of taller purple spires of flowers that grow in the back of the garden. Pink hydrangeas with green wide leaves grow to the left of the daisies in the corner. A wooden garden fence is in the background.
The shasta daisy is an ideal companion plant for the delphinium, as they have the same flowering time.

Shasta daisy, not to be confused with its naughty counterpart the weedy oxeye daisy, is a perfect delphinium companion. They bloom at similar times.

The sunny mounds of happy daisies sit beneath the feet of tall varieties of delphinium. Or they can be interspersed with shorter bushier varieties of delphinium. The white and yellow daisies are a perfect neutral accent to show off the intense blue and purple delphinium blooms.


Several soft pale pink garden roses with double blooming petals among dark green foliage grow in a Sunny Garden in front of tall, vertically-growing columns of bright blue flowers that are blurred in the background.
Feel free to combine different colors and varieties of roses and delphiniums to create an amazingly beautiful flower garden.

Delphinium and roses make a perfect cottage garden pair. They bloom at the same time and you can really play with color combinations. Try a dark red rose next to an intense dark indigo-blue delphinium. Or place a fluffy pink rose near a sky-blue delphinium. Or yellow roses with blue delphiniums for a sunny display. The possibilities with these two plants are endless!


Close up of a few budding cobalt blue flowers growing along a dark green stems in front of bright yellow yarrow flowers. The tiny yellow flowers grow in umbel-shaped clusters at the tops of green stems. Several other yellow flower clusters and cobalt blue flowers bloom in the blurred background.
Yarrow is a great wildflower to add to your garden for aesthetics and functionality.

Another companion plan for delphinium is yarrow, which is a great cottage garden flower. It can be aggressive and is not for everyone. But in a wildflower, or meadow-style garden, it creates an explosion of blooms. The fine ferny texture of yarrow with their rounded flower heads in vibrant reds and pinks is the perfect contrast to the tall spikes of delphiniums.


Close-up of flowers growing along green stems. The left flowers are pitcher-shaped and bright pink with dark red spots that are edged in white. The next flowers are also pitcher-shaped and creamy white with red speckles. Then there are purple star-shaped flowers with smaller white petals in the center. The background is a dark wood fence.
Foxgloves and delphiniums go well together in a flower garden.

Foxgloves and delphiniums are great together because they are similar.  They both create tall spires of flowers. But the shape of those flowers is different and adds an extra layer to the garden. The star-shaped delphinium flowers next to the bell-shaped flowers of foxglove flowers contrast beautifully.

Pests and Diseases

As with most flowers, delphiniums come with a few insects that can cause damage to the plant. There are also a few diseases you need to watch out for. However, there is very little chance of these if you properly care for your plants, especially when it comes to watering techniques.


Close up of a plant with thin green stems that are covered in tiny black bugs crawling on the stems. The background is bright green and blurry.
The most common pests of delphinium are the aphids, which suck the juice from the plant.

Aphids are a common pest to have on garden plants. If there are aphids present it is usually a sign the plant is not in good health to begin with. Aphids prey on the weak. So after you deal with the infestation take a look at the affected delphinium’s growing conditions and see if there is an area they are lacking in (light, water, soil).

To deal with aphids, never underestimate the power of a good blast with the hose. Spray the aphids off, or get in there and squish them.

They are small greenish transparent bugs. You will find them along the stems and undersides of the leaves. They will suck nutrients from the delphinium and can delay or destroy the blooms.

If a good spray with the hose isn’t enough, or if you are concerned about snapping or bending the stalks (if they are about to bloom, or in bloom) with the hose. Use insecticidal soap weekly, or as directed on the label. This should clear up the problem. Next, work on correcting the growing conditions so they stay away.

Slugs and Snails

Close-up of a tiny snail with a swirl shell resting on a petal of a purple flower with yellow stamen. The snail is out of its shell stretching its neck with its eyes looking up. The background is green with a few stems that are all blurred.
You can get rid of snails and slugs by making eggshell barriers, setting up bowls of beer, or using slug bait pellets.

Leaves with holes eaten through them might be a slug or snail problem. I find this particular problem near the base of the plant where it can be damp.

There are many methods of dealing with snails. Eggshell or diatomaceous earth (available at garden centers) barriers around the base of the delphiniums will deter them. This will need to be reapplied after heavy rains.

Bowls of beer work as well. The slugs will go to the bowls and you can dispose of them. You will have to check often. I use slug bait pellets from the garden center. I toss some in the garden beds and they seem to disappear.

Powdery Mildew

Close-up of a long green leaf with jagged edges with a white powdery substance covering the leaf. Another leaf with the same powdery white substance is in the background to the left. There is a stone wall in the blurred background.
To prevent powdery mildew, water the delphinium at the base so that water does not get on the leaves.

Powdery mildew is a fungus that can affect a variety of plants, delphinium included. Powdery mildew appears as a silt-like white powder on the leaves of delphiniums. You can wipe the powder off with your fingers. This mildew will stunt and possibly prevent your delphiniums from blooming to their fullest.

Prevention is the best way to avoid powdery mildew. Avoid watering the foliage of your delphinium. I use a drip hose snaked through the garden and water the soil directly. If you are watering overhead, water in the morning.

If you water in the evening the plants will sit with water on their leaves all night before the sun comes up to dry them. This leaves them prone to developing mildew.

Another thing to consider for prevention is spacing. Have your delphiniums spaced out enough to allow adequate airflow through their stems. If the bottoms of the plants are yellow and wet it is a breeding ground for all sorts of fungus, including powdery mildew.

If you already have powdery mildew, spray the leaves with a fungicide that is formulated for powdery mildew (it will specify on the label). In the fall make sure to dispose of all the affected leaf litter so it doesn’t reinfect your plants the following year.

Crown Rot

Tall column of purple star-shaped flowers growing along a dark purple stem that are wilting among foliage that is brown and green, looks as though it is dying. Another tall column of purple flowers is growing in the blurred background.
Avoid planting in damp areas of the garden to prevent crown rot.

Crown rot is caused by bacteria in the soil. The crown of the plant is where the soil meets the stem. When delphiniums are affected by the bacteria the lower leaves will turn yellow and then the crown of the plant will turn to mush and die.

There is not much treatment for crown rot. It can be prevented by not planting in wet areas of the garden. Also, avoid overhead watering that wets the entire foliage of the plant. Also, Spacing plants to allow adequate airflow will help.

Cut down and dispose of all infected plants. Do not replant delphiniums in the same spot or they will also become infected.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do with flowers post-bloom?

Cut off the spent blossoms. You can cut the plant right back and you might get a smaller second flush of blooms late in the season.

Are delphiniums high maintenance?

They are definitely not a maintenance free plant. They do require staking, deadheading, and attention to soil and watering. For a lower maintenance delphinium, choose a grandiflorum variety that is shorter and  clusters of flowers that do not require staking or cages.

Where is the best place to plant delphiniums?

Delphiniums like to be grown in full sun. Choose an area of the garden that offers some protection from the wind. The soil should be light and rich in organic matter and able to drain water away. Delphiniums do not like being in standing water.

Are delphiniums poisonous?

Yes. All parts of the plant and the seeds are toxic to people and pets.

How tall do they get?

The tallest varieties will grow up to 6′ high. But there are varieties that grow up to 3′ high, and even smaller ones that only reach 1′ high. Make sure to read the tags of plants or seeds you will be purchasing so that you know the height your delphinium will reach.

Final Thoughts

Delphiniums are a classic garden plant that adds height and drama to gardens. It’s no wonder so many gardeners plant them. While they are not a maintenance-free plant, I think the effort you need to put into caring for them is well worth the reward of gorgeous stalks of colorful flowers.

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A picture of several different tulip varieties all blooming at the same time. There are flowers in pink, red, and yellow all vibrantly blooming in the spring.


47 Different Types of Tulip Varieties For Your Flowerbeds

Thinking of adding some tulips to your flowerbeds this season? There are many different types of tulips to choose from, so picking just one or two can be a bit of a challenge! In this article, certified master gardener Liz Jaros looks at her favorite types of tulips to add to your flowerbeds this season!

yellow peonies


21 Yellow Peony Varieties to Brighten Your Flowerbeds

Looking for some yellow peonies to brighten up your flowerbeds? There are many differen types of peonies that bloom in yellow, so you have plenty of options! In this article, we take a look at our favorite yellow peony varieties, with names and pictures of each!

Ranunculus Flower in Garden


How to Plant, Grow, and Care For Ranunculus

If you are looking for a bright flower to compliment your garden this season, you should consider growing ranunculus flowers for their bright, and beautiful appearance! In thiis article, cut flower farmer and gardening expert Taylor Sievers walks through how to plant, grow, and care for ranunculus in your garden!