11 Different Types Of Bellflowers You Should Know

Campanula, which is also known as a bellflower, typically has petal-like sepals that are fused together. These plants come in many different colors and shapes and are found all over the world.

What is bellflower?

Bellflower is a genus of about 300 species of annuals, biennials, and perennials in the Campanulaceae family. Bellflowers grow as herbaceous plants and are cultivated across the world for their attractive flowers.

The bell shaped flower petals are fused together into a tube with five lobes arranged in a corolla. Bellflowers grow from a basal rosette of leaves with each stem growing to 30 cm in height. Bellflowers are usually tall branches and have stems with alternate leaves.

Bellflower grows wild across all regions of the United States, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Siberia and Western Himalayas. They can also be found in New Zealand and some Mediterranean countries.

Heading to the garden center, you’ll find that there are many colorful cultivars of Campanula available at most nurseries and large chain stores.

Bellflowers are also known for their association to fairies and wood sprites. This is because bellflower flowers only open at night, which was thought to be a sign that they were used by fairies as lanterns to light up the paths while searching for human souls.

 11 Different Types of Bellflowers 

1) Campanula Lactiflora

Campanula lactiflora is native to the Mediterranean region and North Africa. Now it is cultivated all over the world in a variety of colors from white to blue. This bellflower’s flowers are funnel-shaped and formed into tight clusters.

Campanula lactiflora plants are very easy to grow and prefer sunny locations, and well-drained soil. However, this bellflower can tolerate some shade too, but it is not recommended for those who are just starting out as it grows vigorously. It is a short plant as compared to the other bellflowers and its leaves are oblong with pointed tips.

2) Dalmatian Bellflower

The Dalmatian Bellflower ( Campanula portenschlagiana ) is a perennial flowering plant from the campanulaceae family. It has blue and white flowers, blooming between April to June. The flower stalks are upright so that the flowers can be seen from all sides.

Dalmatian bellflower is native to south-western Germany, France and Italy where it grows in sunny areas on stony slopes and hillsides at an altitude of up to 1200m.

The plant is suited for planting in a rock garden or as an edgings to larger beds. It is also grown in containers because of its long flowering period. The dalmatian bellflower typically reaches a height of 15 to 20cm and prefers full sun. In areas that have hot summers, the plant will need some shade.

The plant is very easy to propagate because it spreads quickly by seed and division. A single plant can grow up to 10 stems during a season and each stem can produce between 6-14 flowers.

3) Campanula Carpatica

Campanula carpatica is an upright bellflower with blue flowers. The stem of this plant has alternate leaves and the leaf stalks are longer than the blades. Bellflowers grow wild across most parts of Europe but you can also grow them in your garden.

The flowers are small and tubular, and they have five lobes. These flowers close during the day and open up in the evening. The bloom season of campanula carpatica is from June to September and are hermaphrodite, which means they have both male and female reproductive parts.

4)Korean Bellflower

Korean bellflower is a perennial that produces beautiful blue flowers on upright stems during the summer. These flowers can be found in North America, where they grow wild and can also be cultivated.

The flower color of Korean Bellflowers vary from white to deep violet-blue. The mature leaves are deeply divided into three lobes and the flowers have five petals. The flowering season of Korean Bellflowers is June through August and reaches heights of 50 to 120 cm.

5) Southern Bluebells

Southern bluebells are native to the United States, particularly in the southeastern part of North America. This beautiful species has deep blue flowers that appear during springtime. These bellflowers grow wild in parts of England, particularly in the Cotswold Hills. They are also found in Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

Northern bluebells are the same species as Southern Bluebells, though they have a different appearance due to environmental conditions. Northern bluebells are perennial plants that grow from long creeping rootstocks and stems (rhizomes). The flowers of northern bluebells are a little smaller than southern ones.

Southern Bellflowers can be found in two varieties-tall and nodding. They grow around 60 cm tall, with flowers of 6-7 petals. These bellflowers bloom between May and June, and they attract butterflies and bees due to their sweet scent.

Southern bluebells are not hard to grow in your garden; all you have to do is dig a hole for each plant, add some soil to make it easy to cover the bulb and then water it regularly.

6) Serbian Bellflower

The Serbian bellflower is a species of flowering plant in the Campanulaceae family. It has blue flowers that bloom during late spring and early summer. The Serbian Bellflower is native to Asia, where it grows wild in much of eastern Turkey and around the Balkans.

Serbian Bellflower is an erect plant that reaches a height of 40 to 150 cm. Its stems are woody, thick and covered with reddish brown hairs.

The flowers can be 6-8 cm across, and they have long corolla tubes with 5 spreading lobes. The flowering season is June through August, though the plants may re-bloom in September.

7) Wild Bluebells

Wild bluebells is also known as wood hyacinth and bluebell, and is a native to Europe, particularly the western parts of Great Britain. It has clusters of bell flowers that bloom during late spring and early summer. The leaves are long, narrow and tough.

Wild bluebells usually grow on mossy banks and may reach a height of 40 to 80 cm. They flower during May through September and are hardy even when grown in dry areas.

The flowers appear between April and May, grow up to 6-8 cm long, with five spreading lobes (petals). There are also many edible bulbs that can be consumed raw or cooked, with a taste similar to spring onions.

8) Canterbury Bells

Canterbury bells is native to the British Isles and central Europe. It has blue flowers that have five petals, blooming during early spring (March-April). Canterbury Bells were introduced into North America in 1629 but are still rare today.

The large bell shaped flowers of Canterbury Bells have a dark center surrounded by broad yellow and blue petals. The flowering season is early spring, and the flowers grow on small stems in clusters of two or three.

Canterbury Bells are hardy perennials native to sandy heaths, thickets, woodland margins and waste places where they grow freely in nutrient-poor soil. They can also be cultivated as garden plants with some care.

9) Adriatic Bellflower

The Adriatic Bellflower, also known as the alpine bluebell, is native to central and northern Europe. It has bell shaped flowers that are a beautiful shade of light blue with a white center. The plant reaches heights of 40-60 cm during the flowering season which extends from April through May.

Adriatic Bellflowers are short lived perennials that require full sun and a sandy soil to grow well. They are best grown in locations with cool summers and mild winters, such as USDA Zones 4-8. The flower stalks are upright so that the flowers can be seen from all sides.

Like most other species of flowering plants, the Adriatic bellflower requires plenty of sunlight and plant nutrients. The soil should be rich in organic matter and have a pH value between 5.5 to 6.8 for it to grow well.

It is better if you fertilize the plants regularly during growth, as this will give your bellflowers longer blooming seasons (they usually flower April-May). You can also divide the bellflowers into smaller bunches when they are done blooming, in order to increase your harvest.

10) Bluebell

Bluebell is a genus within the family Asparagaceae , subfamily Scilloideae . It was formerly classified as being within the lily family. They are native to Europe and North Africa and are known as wild bluebells. The genus contains about 25 species of perennial herbaceous plants, growing from bulbs and having erect flowering stems 15–60 cm tall.

Flowers are bell-shaped, 5–10 cm diameter; they have six white tepals with an inner band of stamens (that look like a clove when viewed end-on) and a single style. The leaves are linear, 10–60 cm long; the basal rosette dies out by flowering time.

Bluebells have been used in herbal medicine in the form of tea to treat digestive disorders, especially dyspepsia , and serve as an expectorant . Other uses include treatment of menstrual disorders, sore throats , gastrointestinal cramps, nosebleeds , and coughs.

Bluebell flowers are traditionally associated with the Christmas holiday season in Europe . They are so popular that they are often used as decoration for weddings or other holidays. Bluebell is also one of the symbols of Brittany in France . The plant grows naturally on calcareous grasslands and is not considered endangered in any country.

11) Peach-Leaved Bells or Tiger Bells

The Peach-Leaved Bells or Tiger Bells ( Campanula persicifolia ) is a species of flowering plant from the family bellflower native to south-western Europe, where it grows in rocky areas such as hedgerows and walls. The flower stalks are upright so that the flowers can be seen from all sides.

Peach-Leaved Bells or Tiger Bells are easily cultivated in any garden soil that is well drained and moist, but not waterlogged. They can be increased very easily by division of the roots or seeds as soon as they are ripe.  

The plant's flowers have a number of uses. The leaves can be used as a lettuce substitute, the petals are added to salads and the whole flower can be added as garnish. The petals have also been used in traditional herbal medicine for their diuretic , digestive and vermifuge properties.


- What is the largest among all bellflowers?

Oxypetalum Tripterospermum from Brazil, the plant can grow to a height of 3 metres.

- What is the smallest among bellflowers?

Gentians are small flowers that grow wild on rocky hillsides in many parts of the world. Their individual petals have fused together to form a bell shape with 3-5 lobes.

- Do they have any medicinal value?

Yes, they are a good source of vitamins. They can be used to treat cough and sore throats. The petals have been used in traditional herbal medicine for their diuretic, digestive and vermifuge properties.

- Are bellflowers reared as ornamental flowers?

They are widely grown as an ornamental flower for gardens and parks. The largest cultivar is 'Queen Victoria', which grows to a height of 1 m and has deep violet blue flowers 15 cm in diameter with 30 petals, produced over a long period from late summer into autumn (September to November).

Bellflowers are also grown for the cut-flower market. Other popular species used for this purpose include G. coccinea, G. rotundifolia and G. trachelium, which are used in their own right or as a mixture known as "nigella".


Bellflowers with the most popular and widespread species are used in herbal medicines, food and as ornamental plants.  Some of them are endangered species like Night-scented stock(Matthiola incana) which has been included in CITES Appendix II. It is native to Asia Minor but widely naturalized in many countries around the world.

1 ratings