Of course, it can be easily grown and cared like other bellflower counterparts that I mentioned earlier.
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Before diving into the central part of this article, I want to introduce some necessary information about this plant first. Make sure you read carefully to start with ease.
This plant features long flower stalks that can reach up three feet and grow from a rosette of green leaves in the first year. Then flowers and stems will be in the second year.
The stem is sturdy, erect, bristly hairy and reddish-brown.
When the stalks rise, you can catch buds forming on the tips. And in the early summer, the flowers will open with their bell-shaped appearance and last through the early fall.
While the basal leaves are lanceolate to elliptical and 5-6 inches long with serrated leaf edge, the upper ones are smaller and sessile, embracing the stem.
A Thorough Guide On Growing And Caring Canterbury Bells
Due to their heights, it is best to grow these plants outdoors, particularly in borders or among shrubs. In case you want to grow indoors, you might struggle to keep them alive.
Indeed, I tried and got some troubles. (Although they are not serious, this makes me annoying for a short time. Of course, I will mention it in the upcoming part. So, keep reading.)
They prefer warm or cool zones, not suitable for hot, dry places or tropics. Also, they thrive in slightly shaded to sunny areas in well-drained soil.
Hence, if you carry out properly, the seeds will germinate within 14-21 days.
However, these are general information.
Now, I will show you a detailed guide as well as necessary tips for planting Canterbury bells.
How to grow?
Start sprinkling seeds on well-drained beds or pots with a pH of 5.5 to 5.8. Avoid covering the seeds since this stops the germination.
As you know, pH level ranges from 0 to 14, with above 7 being alkaline, below 7 acidic, and 7 neutral. And to measure it exactly, the best thing is to use a pH meter or use dyes or certain indicators (though these are less accurate, in my opinion).
Additionally, you should pay attention to the temperature. Set the temp between 65 and 68°F so that the seeds can germinate well.
Or if you need the highest germination, simply keep 68°F about four days after sowing.
Always maintain the seeds moist yet not too soggy so that the seeds can germinate well.
As the seedlings appear, you should add a light layer of a well-balanced fertilizer and continue keeping a moderate air temp (68-72°F).
What To Consider More?
Usually, the Canterbury bells will grow well in pots without adding any amendments.
In case you are starting from seeds, the best thing is to add a little sand.
Always REMEMBER that this plant requires a well-drained soil whether it develops in a pot or the ground.
Let me remind you again!
This flowering plant will grow best when placed in a bright position with full sun. Don’t grow them in the shade, or the stems will become weak.
Although it is listed for hardiness zones from 4 to 10, it prefers cooler temperatures.
And if you grow it in winter, you should cover it with a cold frame.
About fertilizing and watering:
The best fertilizer for this plant is a water-soluble liquid one, and you should use every two weeks during the summer.
However, if catching any wilted flowers, stop instantly.
How about watering?
Doing during the summer to keep the soil moist is a MUST. But never make the soil soaked.
During the blooming season, deadheading and getting rid of any withered flowers is necessary since this helps to prolong the flowering.
It is also a good way to save seeds for the next planting.
But you should leave some flowers intact so that they can self-seed. And this increases your opportunities for growing this plant year after year.
If you sow in early August, you can cut flowers in late December to early January. Make sure the night temp is always kept at a minimum of 50°F, and the crop is lighted between 40 and 45 days, starting 4 to 5 weeks after transplanting.
You need to cut stems if there are two or three opening buds below. Then put these stems in lukewarm water and keep them in a cool place in an upright position to prevent the stems bending.
Similar to most bellflower plants, this one is easily reproduced by seeds. And the best time to start is in late spring or early summer.
Remember that you need minimal covering with soil. Then sprinkle seeds in the bed and let nature do the rest (of course, don’t forget to water regularly).
The plants will sit during the winter, and when the spring comes, you need to grow them in the garden or pots.
About pest controlling:
In terms of diseases and pests of Campanula, there are no severe problems.
But you occasionally catch slugs and snails since these pests enjoy mulching on the foliage. Or if you do discover aphids, simply wash them away with sprays of cold water.
As outlined above, the Canterbury bells should be planted outdoors.
In case you grow indoors, you might deal with the whitefly. However, don’t worry too much because it can be controlled with an organic Neem oil or insecticide.
So, are you interested in my suggestion of Campanula medium to add elegance and grace to your garden or even your balcony?
Just make sure you perform what I discussed above correctly so that these biennials can produce beautiful white, violet, pink, and blue bell-shaped flowers and bloom for a long time.
Now, it is time to start planting and don’t forget to share your results with me.
Or you can ask me anything in case you still wonder about this plant by leaving your comments below. I’m always here to help you.
Also, remember to keep following me in upcoming posts to get other lovely choices from the family Campanulaceae for your backyard.