Aquilegia coerulea (Aquil-coer)
Vergleich: Siehe: Ranunculacae
Vergiftung: Despite the fact that Columbines have been ingested as tea and in salads, Columbines are considered poisonous plants. The consumption of approximately 20 grams of
Common Columbine leaves (Aquil-vulg) has caused poisoning symptoms of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, breathing difficulties, heart pains, absent-mindedness, stupefaction, and confusion.
Its toxins, however, are destroyed by heat and drying.
Although records of toxicity are not available for the species of the Rocky Mountain Columbine (Aquil-coer), it belongs to a family that contains a number of mildly toxic plants.
According to information on botanical website’s the flowers are most likely perfectly safe to eat, are rich in nectar and taste sweet. The plant is not toxic to livestock.
Awe-inspiring to visitors of the Rocky Mountains, the alpine Columbine ‘s pristine beauty catches everyone’s attention from June through August. The intense blue of the flower’s outer petals
resemblesthe color of a glacier lake or a clear Colorado sky on a summer morning. And skies hardly get any bluer than that. Its inner white concentric sepals summon images of sheer purity,
and the fine gold colored stamens add to the flower’s delicacy. With admiration, hikers and mountaineers alike watch the delicate Colorado State flower dance in the slightest breeze.
The taxonomic name for the Colorado Columbine is Aquilegia coerulea o. caerula.
• Aquilegia - Latin for eagle, the flower’s spurs resemble an eagle’s talon.
• Coerulea - Latin for blue
• Columba - Latin for dove or pigeon (the flower resembling the flight of these birds).
Columbines belong to the Ranunculaceae.
The Rocky Mountain Columbine grows app. 30 to 75 cm (1 - 3 feet) high and about 45 cm (1½ feet) wide. In the wild, the flower is usually of an intense blue color (or white); variations of pink,
yellow, orange, red or dark purple flowers are mostly found in gardens. The blossom is arranged into two concentric circles; the inner five sepals assembled around gold-colored multiple stamens,
the outer five petals tapering into narrowing trailing spurs. The rolled spurs at the back of the flower reach upward, resembling an eagle’s talons. The flower is much liked by butterflies that uncoil
their long tongues to reach the very bottom of the narrow canal of each spur.
The contrasting sepals and petals of the Columbines give them a pixie-like look as they sit gracefully atop erect wiry branches. A bluish-green color is characteristic of the plant’s leaves. The leaves
grow on long stems and are divided into three parts, each forming a scalloped three-petal leaf with a slight resemblance to cloverleaves. The species of Aquilegia coerulea (Aquil-coer) will turn its
flowers partially upward to face the sun, while hybrids growing in gardens frequently hang their flowers downward.
Though the sun sheds golden glory
O’er the far-flung hills at dawn,
From a world azure and silver
Are your lovely colors drawn
From the great white peaks that tower
And the glacial lakes below;
From the deep blue sky above you
And the pearly clouds aglow.
Sweet columbine, sweet columbine
Beneath the aspen and the pine
You seem a gift from heav’n above;
How fair you blow, like sky and snow,
The spirit of the land I love,
The flower of the State of mine,
Sweet columbine, sweet columbine.
- From a lyric by Edgar MacMechen, 1922
The Rocky Mountain Columbine is native to Western North America including Arizona, Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, Wyoming and Utah. In the mountains, the exotic flower has a broad
habitat range, thriving in Aspen groves, along streams, in open woodlands and even on hot, dry talus slopes. It can be found on alpine meadows at elevations of 5000 to just above 10.000 feet
(app. 3600m). The flower used for the proving was picked on July 20th at Rocky Mountain National Park, at an elevation of 9000 feet in a mossy spot along a stream, just below a group of pine
In 1820 Edwin James, a brave mountaineer and his climbing party first climbed Pikes Peak, the most famous mountain peak in Colorado. Little did Edwin James know that the delicate blue and
white flower he found on his climb would be adopted to be Colorado’s State flower in April of 1899 (exactly one hundred years before the tragedy at the Columbine High School in Littleton,
Colorado). Laws passed in 1925 prohibited removing any Columbines from public land. Additionally, it was declared illegal to pick Columbines from private land without the owner’s consent
and the number of flowers picked was legally limited to 25. Praising the Rocky Mountain Columbine, the Colorado State song’s last verse reads as follows:
“ This the land where the Columbines grow,
Overlooking the plains far below,
While the cool summer breeze in the evergreen trees,
Softly sings where the Columbine grows.”
- A.J. Flynn 1915
Very little is recorded about Aquilegia coerulea (Rocky Mountain Columbine) being a fairly recent discovery of the New World, while the history of Aquilegia vulgaris (Common Columbine)
it’s European sister, reaches back into the 16th century. We do know, that some Native American cultures used the seeds of the Rocky Mountain Columbine in a love potion.
Originally, the European Common Columbine (German: Akelei, Swedish: Akileija) was dedicated to the Norse goddess Freya, the goddess of love and fertility, crops and birth. Freya was the
symbol of sensuality called upon in matters of love. She loved music, spring, flowers, and elves and was the most gracious and beautiful of all the goddesses. Old symbolism relating the plant
to love and fertility has been preserved in paintings exhibiting sexual imagery, secret love and seduction, inconsistency and fickleness. Over time, Christianity transferred elements of the plant’s
original mythical symbolism related to the goddess Freya to the Virgin Mary (Details see AH, Volume 11, 2005).
Herbal Applications of Aquilegia Coerulea
Several North American Indian tribes have used the Rocky Mountain Columbine for a variety of purposes:
As love medicine to attract the girl of their dreams
Gosiute Indians (Great Salt Lake, Utah) used the plant as an analgesic
Meskwaki Indians chewed the root for stomach and bowel problems
Meskwaki Indians combined Columbine with Prickly Ash to treat “thick urine”
Milk that had been boiled with leaves was ingested to cure sore throats
A decoction of the root, sometimes combined with leaves to cure diarrhea
Used to treat the pain of rheumatism, plant parts unknown
North Western Natives mixed the ripe seed into tobacco for sweet smell
Increased energy was reported as a jittery, buzzing state and was reflected in mental and physical symptoms alike. The deep calmness many provers felt, reached nuances from being less bothered, to a
feeling of sedation and laziness, dullness, indifference and heavy sluggishness. On the opposite site of this scale anxiousness and irritation were experienced, most likely related to increased
mental/emotional sensitivity. Following is a list of mental states experienced during the proving:
Spacey, dull, dream-like
Averse to company
Easy to anger
Anxious, impatient and irritated
For the first 1½ weeks of the proving I had horrible agitation, was much less patient. I was anxious, fidgety and flustered. I couldn’t focus or remember what I was just looking at.
High energy, more motivated, more cheerful
Restless, fidgety, jittery
Unusual internal calmness, mind quiet, no need to rush
Unusually relaxed, less hurried
Feels like taken a mini Valium, pleasant sedated feeling
Depressed, melancholic, unhappy
Crying for no reason
Moved to tears by music, thoughts, stories, movies
Leaving out, transposing letters, horrible handwriting
Irritable and impatient
Less sympathetic, less patient with family
Wants to be alone, averse to company
Emotionally agitated, angry, throwing things, short fuse
Hit friend (very mild mannered person)
Increased confidence to speak up, ask
Mentally focused, efficient, organized
Topics in Dreams:
Of the 176 dreams recorded during the proving, 58 dreams started with threatening or violent situations that turned into dreams with benign or happy endings. It seems remarkable that 1/3 of the
dreams followed this pattern.
Prover 708 had frightful dreams, something she had never experienced before. Prover 1006 was cured from violent dreams suffered since serving during operation Desert Storm in Iraq in 1990 (1006).
It is suggested, that Aquil-coer could help with nightmares. Following is a list dream topics:
Happy endings - threatening dreams end positive
Water related dreams
Attire and looks
White, yellow and blue/turquoise color
Helping others and rescuing
Forces of nature
Gatherings and food
Birth and death
Pregnancy and birth
Narrow places (Prover had 12 dreams about this topic)
Erotic and sexual dreams
Live in house with cannibals and murderers; talk them out of killing me
At a party for child, men with machine guns enter, everything goes dark, calmly I am waiting for the
opportunity to escape
Followed by someone, but tricked the person who was following
Joyfully watching divers while snorkeling
Laughing at two guys with canoes heaped with luggage for a 4-hour trip
Someone falls into a creek, gets up and laughs
Dangerous surfing turns out to be in a swimming pool
Cross-dressing party, bow ties, top hats, jewelry, silk crimson dress
Ladies wearing shimmering dresses, one peach one turquoise
Yellow, blue, and white
Swept away by strong current when kayaking, rescued two girls
Child at pool, dead, she is receiving CPR, I speak to her; she becomes alive
Driving a Jeep across a river water pouring in, have to protect daughter
Prescient dream about pregnancy
Gave birth to a baby girl
Sea creature gives birth
Dog that died of cancer
Hugged dead aunt
Bright, yellow banana bread
Party with lots of food ,
Listening to music in a mountainous field, talking to female musician, nice experience
Grateful Dead concert
Saw Phil Lesh of Grateful Dead at a concert
Friend fighting with her boyfriend turned into a wedding and a concert
Long, narrow river with long skinny piers
Long skinny passage from barn to corral
Crawled under an upholstered chair, to get away from rattlesnake
Vans, passenger vans, semis, big trucks, different colors
Fitting new carpet in blue car
Prolonged erotic dreams (several)
Marked symptoms for this area included an intense sensation of heat, tingling and buzzing sensations in various parts of the system, sensitivity to warmth and heat, weakness like being
sedated, craving dairy and > from eating.
High energy morning, low 12 h. - 16 h., high again in evening
Woke up ready to go with lots of energy
Tingling, buzzing sensation, erector muscles of spine, upper face, L top of head
Tingling experienced by many provers in different parts of the body
Sensation of heat
Sensation of heat in core
Hot (face, hands, feet) > drinking cool water
Woke very hot, hot all day
Chilly on a warm day
Very cold, want to get into bed and cover up
Cold, almost like flue, > anything warm, warm drinks and heater
Sedated feeling, feel like a rest, feel like taken a mini Valium
Desire milky, creamy things, cheese and juicy fruit
Craving: cheese/dairy, milk, ice cream/cold milk (doesn’t drink milk)
Desires: cold food, drinks;
Irritability > eating
Anxiety > eating
Weak and strained, winded going up-stairs, > eating a big meal
Pains moving from left to right
Foot sweats ameliorates all symptoms
Symptoms begin with tingling, move to itching and then into pain
Most remarkable during the proving were the sensations of heat, tingling, itching and redness (head/face/limbs/chest/stomach). Pains were generally experienced as sharp,
stinging and pressing, and appeared in the head, eyes, ear, face, mouth, throat, abdomen, stomach and female organs. A large number of provers experienced nausea and vertigo, some with
headaches as concomitant.
Immediately after taking the first dose of the remedy, my face felt hot. The sensation gradually intensified. I felt nauseous, had a hot sensation in my stomach, and my lips were buzzing.
I wanted to take my clothes off and roll in the snow.
Head: Sharp, stinging pain, forehead < lying down
Stabbing pain L temple
Quick, pulsating pain in R temple
Light headed, frontal headache with vertigo ; < standing, walking > eating
Outward pressure on top of head moving L to R, itchy
Pressure on both sides of head as if being squeezed with two hands
Strong headache over forehead and eyes with loss peripheral vision and nausea
Tingling up back of head, waking from nap
Tingling as if hair is standing on end, L Vertex
Sensation hair is standing straight up at occiput and vertex
Sensation as if hair is being pulled at crown of head
Itching on Vertex > scratching (lasted 4 - 5 days)
Formication L side vertex intensifying to pain
Sensation of heat in head
Vertigo: Dizziness (< standing, < bending)
Sensation as is would fall to left
Heaviness in head felt like falling forward >: moving slowly/fresh air;
Wave-like sensation in forehead, < movement
Stabbing pain L eye
Pain R temple and R eye socket
Eyes red-rimmed, swollen
Droopy, heavy eyelids
Flash of light
Peripheral vision foggy around the edges
Reduced peripheral vision, top down < reading > looking out window
Trouble focusing close but not distance
Ear: Pain, l. ear canal, > pressure > cold
Pressing pain in l. ear radiating to temple, l. jaw joint and l. molars
Intense sharp pain in outer l. earlobe
Left ear feels fuzzy, asleep feeling extending to chin
Shooting, stabbing pain r. ear
Plugged, pressure in r. ear canal
Sensitive to noise, had to turn down headphones
Sounds keep shifting from r. to l.
Nose: Watery, clear runny nose (salty),
L. nostril, clear, thin mucus
Paroxysms of sneezing
Chemical odor in nose
Nail polish odor in nose, very strong
Smelling bad odor with bad taste in mouth
Itching and tingling nostrils
Nostrils tender, sore
Face: Pain jaw as if had been clenching/grinding teeth
Throbbing, pulsating pain jaw joint
Itchy, stinging rash under chin
Red, flushed, hot
Mouth: Apthae, stinging, tip of tongue,
Apthae, inside cheek
Extremely dry mouth
Mouth dry, need to lick lips, swallowing difficult
Lips dry (splitting), 0108
Swelling of lips 0508
Woke with lemon taste in mouth (several days)
Throat: Stabbing pain at back of neck on swallowing, > pressure on R neck muscles
Stinging pain L side extending to L ear
Hot, burning both sides with congestion
Swollen, raw, aching pain on L tonsil
Sore throat (< inhaling), (splinter-like)
Dry, sore top back of mouth, craved cold water, > cold water
Scraping, scratchy sensation in throat with mucous
Sensation of lump (with choking sensation),
Neck: Chill from neck to feet
Flushes of heat, sides of neck
Flushing red stripe up L side of neck
After eating, sharp pains gas and cramps, > laying down, < sitting
Severe, violent abdominal cramping with sudden urge for stool; foul smelling diarrhea, feel drained
after diarrhea, but mental physical stamina OK
Intense nausea, excruciating stomach pain > cool, followed by several bouts of diarrhea, body hot, > cool/laying still, < getting up
Nausea [with sensation of heat (roasting from the inside out), but body is cold/belching with lemon taste]
Eructations tasting of alcohol (no alcohol ingested)
Thirsty (for cool water)
Intense hunger, appetite (> eating),
Decrease in appetite
Abdomen: Sharp pain l. side
Dull, cramping pain, waist
Pressing pain lower abdomen
Heat sensation, spleen area
Rectum: Several bouts of painless, gushing diarrhea
Frequent bowel movements
Constipation with dizziness, nausea, headache
Bladder: Decrease in urination (thick urine)
L-sided back spasm and increased urination
Female organs: Nosebleed before rising from bed day of menses onset
Menses 4 days late
Menses started 5 days early
Painful cramps, nauseated, difficult to get ready for work with pain
Intense itch and small bump, > warm shower, compress
Stinging, biting pain upward inside vagina
Sexual desire decreased, not as proactive, orgasm not a priority
Cough: Paroxysms of cough, > head elevated
Tickling at roof of mouth and back of tongue causes cough
Chest: Hot, as if burning, skin hot to touch, red-hot splotches, > cool
Fluttery feeling in chest
Itching, l. nipple
Back: Bubbling sensation radiating from scapula to crown of head
Chilly shivering, tingling up and down spine while urinating
Left side intense pulsating pain
Limbs: Arthritis-like pain and stiffness
Stiffness, couldn’t type, write
Hand feels stiff, like a glove, < morning, < cold, < before storm
Heat in both hands
Hands hot, clammy, sweating
Sudden, burning, sore, upper arms, < touch, < movement
Soles of feet burning
Soles of my feet burning. I had a hot feeling extending to arms, hands, face, my chest being very hot, burning, and turning red > fanning, drinking cold water. On the next day the heat
stopped, I felt cold and chilled, chills starting on my neck, running down entire body.
Awakened 4 times by painful electric shock to base of palm
Sharp pain middle two fingers of L hand
Shooting pain in L hamstring area, < flexing
Sharp cramp in bottom of foot arch of foot
Itching and tingling
Hands itching and arms (< night)
Chill, goose bumps down arms with tingling, shoulders prickly
Tingling in elbow with numbness in fingers
Sleep: Light sleep
Waking from anxiety and restlessness
Waking, jittery, but easily back to sleep
Sleepiness but unable to sleep
Perspiration: Acrid smelling
Breasts to neckline
Profuse R side
Perspiring on waking
Skin: Old moles, upper arms, became raised, round, and red
Red, spotty, irregular rash on front of neck after bathing
Itching trunk, legs, neck
Itching face, soles of feet, palms of hands
Skin warm, chilled internally, not quite sweating > indoors
Twelve provers highly impressed by the curative effects of Aquil-coer experienced improvements in dreams, energy and concentration, blood sugar levels, nose congestion and inflammation, stomach
problems, menstrual cramping and acne.
• Prover 1006: History of violent dreams (result from being a soldier/PTSD). During the proving, dreams lose their violent aspect. Locations and persons in the dreams are
similar, but no violence occurs. The prover continues to have less violent dreams as of May 2008 (proving 2006).
• Prover 0508: Overall energy much improved; thinking more clearly, better memory and improved concentration. Not cranky although didn’t sleep well. Happy, refreshed throughout day. Feeling more energetic and able to do
more things. Less irritated with people; not getting upset with anyone; clear focus all day. Duration 23 days.
• Prover 1206: I have been congested for a long time. After two days of the remedy it’s gone. My energy level is higher than ever. I also have been dealing with runner’s stitch on the left, nothing has helped. Since the proving I have had it very infrequently. But I have been very sad in the mornings and evenings.
• Prover 1406: Nose congestion, present for six months cured by the remedy on Day 4.
• Prover 0707: Red, swollen inflammation on tip of left nostril for 6 months, no treatment helped, < on day 3 of the proving. The right septum became red and inflamed for a day. By evening only dry and crusty; the inflammation went down by 80%. On day 7 of the proving the inflammation was completely gone, not to return.
• Prover 0807: Suffers from sinus congestion. Left sinus opened up on day 1. Both sides open during the whole proving.
• Prover 0707: Stomach seems to assimilate food better, no gas after meals.
• Prover 0707: Experienced a noteworthy drop of blood sugar levels. Fasting blood sugar levels were taken between 7.30 - 8 h. every day, reading 138 on the first day, 120 on day 14 and 116 on day 21 of the proving.
• Prover 0406: Menstrual cramps less intense than usual. No blood clots, no cramping after 1st day, less profuse, less tired, able to stay active.
• Prover 1108: Overall menses better, cramps much less intense than usual, no vomiting.
• Prover 307: Acne I had my entire lifetime seems noticeably cleared up, fungal rash on upper arms since July 2006 is gone.
• Prover 0508: Fell asleep easier, slept through whole night, woke refreshed, happy all day.
• Slept through the night for 22 days (highly unusual).
Summary and Conclusion
Most mental states experienced during the proving of the Rocky Mountain Columbine (Aquil-coer) also appeared previously in the Common Columbine (Aquil-vulg) proving: Exuberance, high energy,
hypersensitivity (especially heat, light and noise), slowness, calmness, sedation and relaxation, forgetfulness, indifference to other’s feelings, easily angered and excited, weeping easily, and aversion to company.
Every one of these mental states is contained in the list of sensations of the Rananculacea family compiled by R. Sankaran in his book Schema, and clearly part of the family picture. A number of symptoms of Aconitum, Cimicifuga, Clematis, Helleboris, Hydrastis and Pulsatilla were also part of both Columbine provings.
The amount of violent dreams with benign outcomes and seems an impressive result of the proving.
Aquil-vulg did not influences dreams in this way or produce similar dreams. Dreams occurring during both provings include: Colorfull dresses, gatherings, mountainous areas, animals, sexual dreams,
pregnancy, water and colorful cars.
Physical symptoms experienced by a majority of Aquil-coer - provers clearly point to the use of the remedy to treat nausea and vertigo, stitching pains of the GI-tract (with diarrhea) and the
extremities (with heat and tingling), headaches (with heat and vertigo), menstrual problems including thick bland discharge and rash-like skin conditions.
Finally, how do themes of a substances appearance, or behavior transcend a proving? Shouldn’t two gorgeous flowers equally yield themes of beauty and grace? In the earlier proving of the Common Columbine (Aquil-v.) these topics surfaced in dreams. Amazing dreams of nature, landscapes, an “unworldly” garden, beautiful flowers, and a palace satisfied this expectation. The Rocky Mountain Columbine (Aquil-coer) did not offer anything along these lines. Its beauty was revealed by its capacity of pacifying violent dreams and an impressive amount of curative effects during the proving.