About Tall Bellflower: Though most wildflowers in the Campanula family come from the United Kingdom or the Mediterranean region, Tall Bellflower is an American native. Noted horticulturist Carl Linnaeus first recorded this species in 1753. Tall Bellflower distinguishes itself from other members of this family by its flowers that open fully rather than forming a bell shape. From the Latin, “Campanula” means “little bell,” while “Americana” refers to the place of the plant’s first identification. In the wild, these lovely purple spikes grow in woodland areas or moist fields.
Tall Bellflower Germination: This plant has the unique ability to be either an annual or a biennial, depending on the time it is planted. For annual plants direct sow in late fall, planting the seeds on the surface of the soil. For biennials, mix the seed with moist sand and store it in the refrigerator for 30 days before planting in early spring. Thin or transplant the seedlings to 18-24” apart. This plant adapts well to sand or clay, and grows best in partial shade and rather moist soil.
Growing Tall Bellflower Seeds: Bellflower plants need fairly moist soil, especially when becoming established; this plant has poor tolerance of drought. In its first stage of growth this plant will consist of a low cluster of leaves, followed by the appearance of the tall flowering stalk. Though bellflower will self-seed, it spreads very slowly. Tall Bellflower attracts hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees.
Harvesting Tall Bellflower: For fresh flowers, cut the stems just when they have begun to bloom. Place them in water immediately.
Saving Tall Bellflower Seeds: Since the tiny seed pods on the stalk will ripen at different times, the seed will need to be harvested over period of time. Shake the entire plant over a container to remove the seed that has ripened, repeating the process every few days until all the seed on the stalk has ripened. Store the cleaned seed in a cool, dry place.
Detailed Tall Bellflower Info: Origin: US Native Other Common Names: American Bellflower, Americana Campanula Duration: Biennial Bloom Time: Summer-Fall Height: 48-60 inches Spacing: 18-24 inches Light: Partial Shade to Woodland Soil Moisture: Medium USDA Zone: 4a-8b Seeds Per Oz: 300,000 Produces pointed oval leaves and small clusters of 1” starry, saucer-shaped purple flowers with five petals.