Perhaps the favourite Campanula of many gardeners is little Campanula poscharskyana. Its violet stars bloom profusely and the creeping habit of its heart-shaped foliage is simply charming.
With long trailing stems that are up to 60cm (24in) long it grows to only 15cm (6in) tall and forms thick spreading clumps that are covered with violet-blue open faced, star shaped flowers.
The plants flower just 16 to 22 weeks from sowing. The star-shaped flowers bloom from late May or June all the way through September and into autumn. Sometimes it becomes so flower laden it is a pure blue carpet with the leaves nearly hidden, that's when Campanula porscharskyana looks at its most glorious.
Campanula poscharskyana is an alpine species. It will tolerate a bit of sun and can be fairly drought tolerant, but will put on the best floral display in light shade with moderate water. It prefers regular moisture and reasonably fertile conditions; it will perform well in most soil types but must have good drainage to thrive. Extremely hardy, to at least minus 15°C (5°F), the plant is fully to semi evergreen.
This trailing perennial makes a showy display in summer so grow them where they may be appreciated. At home in rock gardens or the edges of mixed borders, it looks beautiful planted between paving stones or tumbling from crevices in, or on top of stone walls. The plants trailing habit makes it a great ground cover, use it under perennials or between the stones of a pathway. It can also be used to cascade over a hanging basket or over the edge of a container. We cannot imagine a garden without this invaluable perennial.
Sowing: Sowing: Sow indoors in autumn to mid spring (Sept-March for flowering in April-August.). Or sow in late spring (March to April) for flowering in July-August.
The seeds should be sown on the surface of the compost, press lightly into the compost but do not cover as they need light to germinate. Cover the seed container with a piece of glass or clear plastic and leave in a temperature of around 16 to 18°C (60 to 65°F) in a position which receives diffused light. The compost should be kept moist at all times. Seeds usually germinate in 2 to 4 weeks.
Campanula seeds usually germinate rapidly depending on temperatures, species and origin. High soil temperatures can delay germination. If germination does not occur after 4 weeks a cooling period of 2 to 4 weeks is recommended. Simply pop them in the fridge for a few weeks.
Once some of the seeds have germinated air should be admitted gradually otherwise the seedlings may damp off. When seedlings have their first pair of true leaves and are large enough to handle, transplant into 7.5cm (3in) pots to grow on in a coldframe.. Avoid planting out seedlings until all threat of frost has passed. When large enough, plant out into their final position plant out 50cm (20in) apart
Campanulas are easily grown in average, medium wet, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. They require an average amount of water, as they do not tolerate really wet or overly dry conditions. Root zones that remain waterlogged tend to get root rot pathogens and can quickly lead to losses. Overly dry growing conditions greatly reduce quality and delay flowering. When watering is necessary, water plants thoroughly, and then allow the soil to dry slightly between waterings. During the growing season apply a balanced liquid fertiliser each month.
Deadheading spent blooms, though tedious, is easily done with a fingernail and will extend the bloom period. Campanulas can generally be grown free of insects and plant pathogens but slugs can damage tender new foliage,
Campanula poscharskyana requires little maintenance; it spreads easily, but rarely invasively. When there is a break in the blooming, sheer them back to preserve a compact shape and keep them tidy, the shearing also induces rebloom.
Evergreen ground cover, Rockeries and walls. Hanging baskets, window boxes, pots and containers.
Campanula poscharskyana is native to the northern Balkans and the Dinaric Alps in former Yugoslavia. It is also known as the 'Serbian Bellflower'.
This plant is grouped with a large number of perennials known as bellflowers which are the signature genera for the Campanulaceae. The genus was classified by Linnaeus and contains about 300 species, mostly from temperate regions of Eastern Europe.
The etymological root of the genus name campanula is derived from the Italian campana meaning 'bell' and refers to the shape of the flowers. The word is from Late Latin around 1630's, campana, originally meant 'a metal vessel made in Campania,' the region around Naples. All Campanulas have bell-shaped flowers, although the flower forms vary considerably.
Collected before 1822, the species poscharskyana, was named to honour Gustav Adolf Poscharsky (1832-1915), a 19th century German horticulturist who was inspector of the Royal Botanical Garden of Dresden.
Pronounced kam-PAN-yoo-luh: po-shar-skee-AH-nuh.
- Additional Information
Packet Size 10mg Average Seed Count 50 Seeds Seeds per gram 5,300 seeds per gram Family Campanulaceae Genus Campanula Species porscharskyana Common Name Serbian bellflower Other Language Names Glockenblume, Kruipklokje Hardiness Hardy Perennial Flowers Violet-blue open faced, star shaped flowers. Natural Flower Time June to September Foliage Heart-shaped Height 20cm (8in) Spacing 50cm (20in) Position Full sun or partial shade Soil Any well-drained garden soil.
Suitable for planting on walls or in poor soils.