Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Consolida ambigua (L.) P.W.Ball & Heyw.

Fully hardy annual with fern-like leaves and tall spires of flowers in pink, white or violet-blue.  Many garden cultivars exist.  To 1.2m.  [RHSE, Hortus].

Horticultural & Botanical History

Consolida ambigua, the ‘Larkspur’, is a more likely identification than the common garden plants known as ‘Delphinium’ today, which are predominantly hybrids of Delphinium species.  Delphinium ajacis was introduced to Britain in 1573 from Switzerland.  [JD].  Don.  ‘Lark’s-spur.  Delphinium, or Consolida regalis.  It grows to a yard high, the leaves are a dark green, and the flowers commonly a fine blue, but sometimes a purple.  It is sown every year in gardens, and flowers most part of the summer.  This is esteemed a vulnerary plant, of a healing nature.  Matthiolus says it cures the rheums and inflammations of the eyes; mixed with honey & drank with sweet wine it removes the sharpness of urine.  It likewise closes up fresh wounds and heals ulcers.’  Blackwell pl.26/1737.

History at Camden Park

Listed in all published catalogues.  Larkspur seed, ‘German, 12 kinds, extra fine, was ordered from Warner & Warner, Seedsmen and Florists, Cornhill, on 12th April 1846.  [MP A2933-1, p.131]. 


Delphinium ajacis Ledeb. (1842-1853) = Delphinium orientale J.Gay

Published Feb 04, 2009 - 05:17 PM | Last updated Jul 29, 2010 - 06:02 PM

The image shows the entire plant, leaves, blue flowers and seed pods.  Blackwell pl.26, 1737.

Consolida ambigua (L.) P.W.Ball & Heyw. | Blackwell pl.26 | BHL

Family Ranunculaceae
Region of origin


  • Consolida ajacis (L.) Schur
  • Delphinium ajacis L.
  • Delphinium ambiguum Mill.
Common Name

Larkspur, Annual larkspur

Name in the Camden Park Record
Confidence level medium