The delphiniums are native to the eastern USA, and are quite tall at four feet high, thus their common name Tall Larkspur. Late summer and early fall is the time of year when they bloom and that they are blue/purple is a bit of a bonus.
However, I am not convinced that what I have are Tall Larkspur. I snipped the flowering stalks off to hasten my plants rooting abilities for the winter and popped them into a tiny glass. I have taken photos over a weeks period but the flower buds will not open fully or perhaps in the same way photos online show. Therefore I am having trouble confirming their actual name.
In the end I suppose it does not really matter as the flowers are pretty, quite delicate looking, and a mild purple blue in colour. What I do hope is that they will survive the winter and I will have another chance to see the plants in bloom once more.
A bit of delphinium lore:
From the Greek word Delphis meaning Dolphin, it most likely refers to the shape of the the flower or nectary. Shakespeare actually calls it the “Lark’s heel” and it is also known as the lark’s claw and the knight’s spur. It is also said that the Greeks named this flower after Apollo, the god of the city of Delphi.
The common name "larkspur" is shared between perennial Delphinium species and annual species of the genus Consolida. They are members of buttercup family. This is a genus with about 300 species that are all flowering plants. The larkspur plant is native to the Northern hemisphere and can handle some colder temperatures and shorter periods of sunshine. The plant can grow as tall as 6 feet. The flower blooms are typically purple, but can also be blue, red, white, or yellow.
The seeds are small and often shiny black. All parts of these plants are considered toxic to humans, causing severe digestive discomfort if ingested, and also skin irritation.
The plants flower from late spring to late summer, and are pollinated by butterflies and bumble bees. Delphinium species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species, including the dot moth and small angle shades.