Campanula, or bellflower plants, are pleasant perennial flowers because of their happy bobbing heads. Bellflowers thrive in areas where the nights are cool and the temperatures are moderate, giving perfect growing circumstances. Bellflowers are at their peak blooming in June and July, but other regions have them blooming well into October. Grow campanula bellflowers for long-lasting alpine native flowers that will brighten the landscape in borders and rock gardens.
Perennial flowers can be found in a wide range of heights, from creepers to full-sized garden plants. Bell or saucer-shaped flowers are the only thing they all have in common. The nodding blossoms of bellflowers give them a fairy-like appearance in the cottage garden, where they’re commonly found with other bright perennials. In the garden, the blossoms endure for weeks, bringing brightness to the midst of summer. It is possible to plant creeping variations in front of flower borders or in rock gardens. The tube-shaped flowers of some kinds give another option. Flowers and plants attract butterflies and bees. Cut flowers from the flower sprays look lovely in bouquets and other decorations.
More than 300 species of Campanula exist, ranging in size and color from annuals to perennials. Lavender or light blue blooms with a pink or white center are the key distinguishing feature. Lower-growing plants can be used as great ground cover as they spread over the seasons. Most bellflowers begin blooming in July and continue until the first frosts of the season. Bellflowers can be grown in a variety of ways.
Conditions for Growing Bellflowers
For optimal results, bellflowers should be planted in USDA plant hardiness zones 4 and up, though they can be protected and still thrive in zone 3. They are useful species in locations where the winters are harsh. Full sun and well-drained, moderately moist soil are necessary for the best flowering of these plants. Bellflowers, if planted, can withstand periods of drought. Bellflowers can be grown in soil with any pH level, even severely acidic.
Where, When, and How to Plant
We have a wide variety of hardy bellflowers in our area. After the risk of frost has passed, the seeds can be sown directly into the garden. In the spring through early fall, you can also plant transplants in well-drained, fertile soil. Grow bellflowers in broad sunlight. In our region’s warmer regions, they will also bloom in partial shade. Bellflower seedlings or transplants should be grown at a distance of one to two feet apart.
Campanula can be grown from seeds or rhizomes, depending on the species. In the spring, once the risk of frost has gone, the seeds should be sown in a well-prepared soil. When taking care of bellflowers, make sure to keep the seedlings moist but not soggy. Rhizomes are planted by cutting them from the parent plant and burying their roots in soil.
Bellflower care does not necessitate any specialized knowledge. Most perennials can withstand a wide range of climates, including drought and high heat. De-heading your bellflowers is an essential part of their care. The plant can also be rejuvenated by chopping it down to the ground in the fall and winter. It is also important to remove seed heads from some varieties of bellflowers because they can spread.
Varieties of Bellflower Plants
Bellflowers come in a wide variety of varieties. There are a few of popular ones: Among Campanulas, bluebells are among the most common. Wildflowers like this one can be found in upland areas all over North America. British-native Scotch bluebell grows to to 10 inches (25.5 cm) tall. In container gardens and rockeries, dwarf bellflowers are an excellent choice for hiding in crevasses and nooks. Even though it grows to only a height of 3 inches (7.5 cm), it can spread to a width of 15 inches (38 cm). One of the most cold-hardy harebells is the Carpathian harebell, which can grow up to 12 inches (30.5 cm). It’s worth the extra work to keep the 1-inch-wide, true-blue blossoms of the American bellflower in check because it’s a prolific seeder and may quickly become a nuisance.
Young plants need a lot of water in the beginning. Drought tolerance is built in once the plants are established. Mulch with bark mulch in the spring to keep the soil cool and moist and add a top layer of compost for fertilizer.
Regional Advice and Care
Bellflowers are easy to grow in our area. Bellflowers are widely dispersed. Each spring, divide a few kinds to keep them blooming and prevent them from spreading. To increase the bloom period of tall cultivars, remove spent flowers. Re-flowering and new growth can occasionally be encouraged by cutting back the long flower stems by a third after they have finished blooming. Look for aphids on the leaves and slugs or snails eating the vegetation. Controlling aphids with insecticide soap and slugs using beer traps or a copper barrier on raised beds can be done. Prevent disease from overwintering near plants by cutting back and cleaning up foliage in the fall.
Companion Planting and Design
In a cottage garden with Siberian irises, columbine, roses, and lady’s mantle, grow bellflower. In rock gardens with iberis and sedums, creeping varieties can grow over rock walls and into the ground.
A variety of white, pink, or blue cup-shaped flowers can be seen on the peach-leafed bellflowers, which can grow up to 3 feet tall. Blue or white chimney bellflowers can reach heights of up to six feet. Flowers cut from these plants keep well. With star-shaped blossoms that are less than 6 inches tall, the Serbian bellflower is a rare find in the wild. The canterberry bell is a flower from the past. On 3-foot-tall flower stalks, they have white or blue flowers.