Aconitum carmichaelii

azure monkshood

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Outstanding Qualities

The strong upright spikes of deep violet-blue flowers are the star of the garden in late summer to early fall. The delicate and lacey foliage lining the stems is a perfect compliment to the boldly colored blooms. This is the last monkshood to flower and is a great late season alternative to the pest prone delphinium.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: upright perennial

Foliage Type: deciduous

Plant Height: 4 ft. 0 in. (1.22 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 3 ft. 0 in. (0.91 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 8

Flower Color: blue, violet

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun to light or open shade

Water Requirements: frequent to regular watering

Seasonal Interest: late summer to early autumn flowers

Wildlife Associations: bees, butterflies

Resistant to: rabbits, deer

Colors & Combos

Great Plant Combinations: Molinia caerulea ssp. caerulea ‘Heidebraut’, Solidago rugosa ‘Fireworks’, Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’, Rosa ‘Sally Holmes’, Salix purpurea ‘Nana’

Great Color Contrasts: chartreuse, red, orange, yellow

Great Color Partners: pink, purple, silver, white

Culture Notes
This monkshood grows best in rich moist to well-drained soils and sandy soils. It prefers regular watering during dry weather. If grown in sandy soils provide frequent watering, as monkshood resents drying out. Avoid hot locations. Plant this perennial in full sun to light or open shade. Stems are stronger in full sun, but flowers will tend to fade faster. In light or open shade the flowering stems can lean, but the intense flower color will last longer.
Geek Notes
The drug 'aconite' is made from the roots of Aconitum. All parts of these plants are poisonous.