Planting & Growing Guide For Milky Bellflower (Campanula lactiflora)
From summer to fall, the milky bellflower, Campanula lactiflora ‘Prichard’s Variety, produces lovely clusters of purple-blue bell-shaped flowers above heart-shaped green leaves. It thrives in planting plans for traditional or cottage gardens and is ideal for growing toward the back of a border. Its blooms draw bees and other pollinators like all bellflowers do. Round clusters of flowers appear from July to October, and the plants reach a height of roughly 75 to 100cm (30 to 36in) and a spread of roughly 60cm (24in). They complement old-fashioned roses nicely at the back of a mixed or herbaceous border and look great planted in broad drifts.
|Botanical Name||Campanula lactiflora ‘Prichard’s Variety’|
|Common name||Milky bellflower|
|Height||3 – 4 feet|
|Spread||1.5 – 2 feet|
|Sun Exposure||Full Sun, Partial shade|
|Soil Type||Preferred Most Soil Types (Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand)|
|Bloom Time||Late spring to summer|
|Hardiness Zones||4-8, USDA|
|Companion Plants||Coral Bells, Lamb’s Ears, Daylily|
|Habit||Bushy, Clump forming|
|Position in border||Middle|
|Aspect||South facing, west facing|
|Soil Drainage||Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained|
|Attracts||Pollinators such as bees, beneficial insects, butterflies, and others|
|Native Area||The Caucasus|
Planting & Growing Milky Bellflower
How to Grow Milky Bellflower From Seed
Sow the seeds in pots or cells using high-quality seed compost. Make sure to sow finely on the surface and gently press the compost. Remember not to cover them because sunlight promotes seed germination. The next step is to place the plant in a propagator or cover with a plastic lid and place it in a warm location. The ideal temperature range is 65 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. After that, water from the bottom to keep the compost moist but not soggy. Alternatively, the seedlings may suffer from damping off. Indoor planting should begin between January and April. Sowing outside should begin between May and June. If you plant it early in the year, it will bloom late in the summer. Alternatively, if sown late in the season, it will overwinter in frost-free conditions before being planted out after the frost has passed.
Transplanting Milky Bellflower
When the seedlings have their first true leaves (which appear after the seedlings’ first pair of leaves) and are large enough to handle, Prick out each seedling and place it in 7.5cm (3in) pots to grow. Adapt to outdoor conditions gradually for 10 to 15 days before planting out into well-drained soil after all risk of frost has passed. Plant 30cm (12in) apart in a position that receives diffused light. The best growing conditions are in partial shade or sun, in fertile, neutral to alkaline soil that is moist but well-drained.
Milky Bellflower Care
Grow Campanula lactiflora ‘Prichard’s Variety in full sun to partial shade, in moist but well-drained, neutral to alkaline soil. To extend flowering, deadhead spent blooms, and mulch annually with well-rotted compost or manure. Divide crowded clumps in the spring or the fall.
New plants require daily watering for several weeks. Then, every two or three days, water. The ideal water depth for the root zone is 6 to 12 inches from the plant’s base, not the entire plant. It is best to water the plant in the morning so that it can dry during the day. You should dig in the soil with your finger or a trowel to check for soil moisture. If the top layer of soil (about 2 to 4 inches) is dry, water immediately.
When preparing beds for new plants, incorporate fertiliser into the soil. Established plants should be fed in early spring and again halfway through the growing season. Avoid applying fertiliser late in the growing season. This stimulates new growth, which is easily damaged by early frosts. There are many different types of fertilisers, such as granulated, slow-release, liquid feeds, organic, and synthetic. Determine the best application method for the situation and choose a product with a nutritional balance designed to promote blooming (such as 5-10-5).
Propagating Milky Bellflower
Take basal cuttings or divide plants by division in the spring or fall to propagate them.
Depending on the flowering habit, remove faded blooms individually or wait until the blooming period is over and remove the entire flower stalk down to the plant’s base. Removing old flower stems directs the plant’s energy toward vigorous growth rather than seed production. Throughout the season, foliage can be pruned freely to remove damaged or discoloured leaves or to maintain plant size. Plants should not be pruned after September 1st. Pruning encourages tender new growth that is easily damaged when the first frosts arrive. Perennial plants require time to “harden off,” or prepare for winter. Plants that have died to the ground are simple to clean up by simply cutting them back to about 4″ (10cm) above the ground. The flowering plumes and foliage of ornamental grasses add a lovely touch to the winter landscape. Leave the plant alone for the winter, then cut it back to the ground in early spring, just before new growth begins.