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Vascular Plants of California
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Aconitum columbianum


Higher Taxonomy
Family: RanunculaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Common Name: BUTTERCUP FAMILY
Habit: Annual, perennial herb, woody vine [shrub], occasionally aquatic. Leaf: generally basal and cauline, alternate or opposite, simple or compound; petioles at base generally flat, occasionally sheathing or stipule-like. Inflorescence: cyme, raceme, panicle, or flowers 1. Flower: generally bisexual, generally radial; sepals 3--6(20), free, early-deciduous or withering in fruit, generally green; petals 0--many, generally free; stamens generally 5--many, staminodes generally 0; pistils 1--many, ovary superior, chamber 1, style 0--1, generally +- persistent as beak, ovules 1--many. Fruit: achene, follicle, berry, +- utricle in Trautvetteria, in aggregate or not, 1--many-seeded.
Genera In Family: +- 60 genera, 1700 species: worldwide, especially northern temperate, tropical mountains; many ornamental (Adonis, Aquilegia, Clematis, Consolida, Delphinium, Helleborus, Nigella). Toxicity: some highly TOXIC (Aconitum, Actaea, Delphinium, Ranunculus). Note: Taxa of Isopyrum in TJM (1993) moved to Enemion; Kumlienia moved to Ranunculus.
eFlora Treatment Author: Margriet Wetherwax & Dieter H. Wilken, family description, key to genera
Scientific Editor: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: AconitumView Description 


Common Name: MONKSHOOD
Habit: Perennial herb from rhizome or tuber; roots fibrous or fleshy. Stem: 1--few, generally erect, generally simple. Leaf: palmately divided; segments 3--7, toothed to lobed; cauline gradually reduced distally on stem. Inflorescence: raceme or panicle, terminal, bracted; pedicels ascending. Flower: bilateral; sepals 5, petal-like, lower 2, < others, pendent, lateral 2, round-reniform, upper 1 > others, hooded, sac-like, crescent-shaped to rounded-conic or cylindric, tip generally rounded to beaked; petals 2, covered by sepal hood, long-clawed, blades generally inflated, spurred; stamens 20--50; pistils generally 3. Fruit: follicle. Seed: deltoid, generally with small transverse wings, dark brown to black.
Species In Genus: > 100 species: boreal arctic, temperate montane to alpine North America, Eurasia. Etymology: (Greek: aconiton, of unknown origin). Toxicity: Most species highly TOXIC, causing death in livestock, humans.
eFlora Treatment Author: Petra Foerster
Reference: Brink & Woods 1997 FNANM 3:191--195
Aconitum columbianum Nutt.
NATIVE
Habit: Plant 3--15(20) dm. Stem: erect, less generally reclining or twining above; bulblets 0 or in axils of leaves, inflorescence. Leaf: 5--15 cm wide; deeply 3--5 divided, segments wedge- to diamond-shaped, toothed to irregularly cut or lobed distally. Inflorescence: open. Flower: sepals deep +- blue-purple to white or yellow-green, lower 7--15 mm, lanceolate to ovate, lateral 8--18 mm, +- round to reniform, upper 10--22(30) mm, 8--20(25) mm wide; petals blue to +- white. Fruit: glabrous to puberulent, glandular or not.

Jepson eFlora Author: Petra Foerster
Reference: Brink & Woods 1997 FNANM 3:191--195
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Citation for this treatment: Petra Foerster 2012, Aconitum columbianum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=11849, accessed on July 19, 2019.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2019, Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/eflora/, accessed on July 19, 2019.

Aconitum columbianum subsp. viviparum
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© 2010 Keir Morse
Aconitum columbianum
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© 2009 Keir Morse
Aconitum columbianum subsp. columbianum
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© 2016 James Morefield
Aconitum columbianum
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© 2017 Barry Rice
Aconitum columbianum
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© 2009 Julie Kierstead Nelson
Aconitum columbianum subsp. columbianum
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© 2009 Barry Breckling

More photos of Aconitum columbianum subsp. columbianum in CalPhotos



Geographic subdivisions for Aconitum columbianum:
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Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.