del·​phin·​i·​um | \ del-ˈfi-nē-əm How to pronounce delphinium (audio) \

Definition of delphinium

: any of a large genus (Delphinium) of the buttercup family that comprises chiefly perennial erect branching herbs with palmately divided leaves and irregular flowers in showy spikes and includes several that are poisonous — compare larkspur

Illustration of delphinium

Illustration of delphinium

Examples of delphinium in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Wow them with this extravagant arrangement of peach roses, orange and pink tulips, mini sunflowers, pink larkspur and blue delphinium, all accented with assorted greenery. Tanya Edwards, CNN Underscored, "18 beautiful flower arrangements to send this Easter," 26 Mar. 2021 This group primarily includes hollyhock, delphinium, columbine and foxglove. Dan Gill,, "What's right for your garden? Learn about 4 groups of fall flowers, when to plant them and when they bloom," 25 Nov. 2020 Plants in their yard include bee balm, phlox, delphinium, coneflowers, Japanese maples, five different kinds of hydrangeas, liatris, cup plant, European ginger, hostas, trillium, a couple hundred ferns, Jack in the pulpit and ligularia. Joanne Kempinger Demski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "With mushroom cutouts, bird condos and plenty of plants, Sussex artist paints the landscape," 8 Oct. 2020 The load will include peonies, sweet pea, ranunculus, delphiniums, hyacinth, and other varieties. J.k. Dineen,, "SF Flower Mart reopens in time for Mother’s Day with new social distancing rules," 22 Apr. 2020 Sow warm-weather plants like nightshades and cucurbits indoors for transplanting in May. Transplant aster, viola, zinnia, marigold, and delphinium from cold frames to beds. Heather Arndt Anderson, Sunset Magazine, "Your Ultimate Spring Gardening To-Do List for March and April," 16 Mar. 2020 The bride, clutching a bouquet of calla lilies and hibiscus, followed a path of white delphiniums that led to an altar adorned with a huge arch of white, yellow, lavender and soft pink flowers. New York Times, "The Perfect Window for a First Impression," 29 Feb. 2020 For cool-season color, sow and plant alyssum, bachelor’s button, calendula, coreopsis, delphinium, hollyhock, and poppy. Thad Orr, Sunset Magazine, "Your Essential Winter Gardening To-Do List," 10 Feb. 2020 Pansies, roses, daffodils, delphinium; her garden was a cascade of blossoms and color., "Marilyn L. Spencer," 10 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'delphinium.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of delphinium

1664, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for delphinium

New Latin, genus name, from Greek delphinion larkspur, diminutive of delphin-, delphis dolphin; probably from the shape of the nectary

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about delphinium

Time Traveler for delphinium

Time Traveler

The first known use of delphinium was in 1664

See more words from the same year

Statistics for delphinium

Last Updated

7 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Delphinium.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for delphinium


del·​phin·​i·​um | \ del-ˈfin-ē-əm How to pronounce delphinium (audio) \

Medical Definition of delphinium

1 capitalized : a large genus of the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae) that comprises chiefly perennial herbs with divided leaves and flowers in showy spikes and includes several especially of the western United States that are toxic to grazing animals and especially cattle — see larkspur, stavesacre
2 : any plant of the genus Delphinium

Comments on delphinium

What made you want to look up delphinium? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!