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Growing Balloon Flowers (Chinese Bellflower)

Category Flowers
These beautiful flowers are a delight even before they bloom with their balloon shaped unopened flower. This is a guide about growing balloon flowers (Chinese bellflower).
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By 1 found this helpful
February 7, 2006

Botanical Name:

Platycodon grandiflorus

Life Cycle:

perennial

Planting Time:

spring or fall

Height:

1' to 3'

Exposure:

full sun or light shade (afternoon shade in hot climates)
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Soil:

average, well-drained soil

Hardiness:

zones 3 to 8

Bloom Time:

mid to late summer

Flower:

bell-shaped purple-blue, pink or white upward facing blossoms

Foliage:

green, fine-textured

Propagation:

seeds or cuttings, plants are difficult to divide

Suggested Use:

containers, edging, cut flowers and borders

Growing Hints:

In the spring, sow seeds directly into ground where you want them to grow. Keep sowing seeds up to 2 months before fall frost date. Seeds can be started indoors 6-8 weeks before transplanting. Seeds require light to germinate so don't cover them; just press them lightly into the soil. Expect flowers the second season. Mark planted areas. Balloon flowers are notoriously slow to wake up in the spring. Cuttings (2" to 4") can be taken in the late spring.
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Interesting Facts:

Balloon flowers get their name from they way their flower buds swell before the petals unveil themselves.
Comment Was this helpful? 1

June 2, 2017

Platycodon is another member of the Campanulaceae Family (bell flower). It is a very winter hardy perennial. It can withstand 3 degree temperature. It is native to East Asia.

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It's roots are edible and often used in Korean cuisine. These roots are also used to make soft drinks as well as liquors.

Platycodon has the common name 'Balloon Flower'. As can be seen in the picture below, the flower inflates before opening, having somewhat the shape of a balloon.

Comment Was this helpful? 1
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