About Harebell: Often identified as Scotland’s “bluebell,” the Harebell can also be found throughout much of North America and Europe. This beloved wildflower even has a place in literature, being named in the poetry of Shakespeare, Rossetti, and Dickinson. In spite of its delicate beauty, this plant can thrive in adverse growing conditions and drought; its wide native habitat includes rocky cliffs, gravel, sand, and woodland. These blossoms were once used for the manufacture of blue dye for Scottish tartans. The genus name, “Campanula,” means “little bell,” while the species name, “rotundifolia,” refers to the plant’s round basal leaves.
Harebell Germination: Direct sow in late fall, planting the seed on the surface of the soil since it needs light to germinate. For spring planting, stratify by mixing the seed with moist sand and storing in the refrigerator for 30 days before planting. Stratified seed can also be started indoors, planted on the surface of a flat and watered from the bottom; keep at a temperature of 60-65 degrees F until germination. This plant prefers dry or sandy soil, though it adapts very well to rocky or woodland soil.
Growing Harebell Seeds: When grown from seed, this plant may not flower until its second year. Seedlings should be watered occasionally until they become developed; mature plants prefer dry soil and only need watering in drought conditions. This plant will self-seed, though it does not become invasive. Harebell attracts bees while resisting rabbits and deer.
Harvesting Harebell: For fresh flowers, cut the stems and place them in water immediately.
Saving Harebell 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 Harebell Info: Origin: Europe, US Native Other Common Names: Scottish Harebell, Bluebells of Scotland, Bluebell, Bellflower, Fairy Thimbles, Heathbell Duration: Perennial Bloom Time: Summer-Early Fall Height: 12-15 inches Spacing: 9-12 inches Light: Full Sun to Part Shade Soil Moisture: Dry USDA Zone: 3a-9b Seeds Per Oz: 900,000 Produces tiny, rounded basal leaves and delicate stems topped by ˝-1” bell-shaped light purple flowers.