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Campanula Lactiflora

Campanula Lactiflora Facts

Campanula lactiflora, is a species of bellflower and also known by its common name, Milky Bellflower. This species is one of the taller members of the bellflower family, often growing to a height of 4 to 5 feet, and as such, usually benefits from staking. Campanula lactiflora is fragrant, somewhat unusual for a bellflower, and while the species’ blossoms can be one of several colors, one of these colors is pink, also unusual for a bellflower. This attractive plant features rounded leaves and conical spires of blossoms, which in addition to pink, are found in white, blue, and violet colors.

Culture - Culture for Campanula lactiflora is similar to many other types of species of bellflower. The plant prefers full sun, but will usually do fine in partial shade as well.  Its watering requirements are similar to most summer garden perennials, which is to say that a moderate watering program is sufficient. The soil should be kept reasonably moist however, or at least not be allowed to dry out. This species and its several varieties are very suitable for what is often called an old-fashioned garden or a cottage garden. Being a perennial, it has a rather deep tap root, so it's important to plant it where you want it to be the first time around, as it will not take well to being transplanted. The flower stalks grow in bunches, so individual plants should be placed around 2 feet apart. As the plant can spread up to 3 feet, plants placed closer than that will result in a dense and showy mass of blooms. Campanula lactiflora is hardy in USDA Zones 4 through 9, and prefers a soil that is mildly alkaline to alkaline (pH from 7.6 to 8.5).

This bellflower is usually sown from seed. It will re seed itself if the seed pods are allowed to remain on the plant. The seed pods, once dry, can be removed and the seeds saved for later. Once the plant is established, it can also be propagated by root ball division. Seed can either be planted outdoors in the late fall or in the spring following the last frost. Seed can also be sown in the winter in a cold frame or greenhouse, or indoors a few weeks before the last frost.

Pests And Disease - Like most species of bellflower, Campanula lactiflora is easy to maintain and generally considered to be quite disease resistance. Snails and slugs are probably the greatest threat to the plant, but only to the young seedlings. Spider mites and aphids sometimes cause a problem, especially to the younger plants. Aphids can be easily removed by spraying the plant with water or a soap and water solution. Spray early in the day though so the foliage will have time to dry before the sun goes down. Other problems, such as blight, mildew, and leaf spot are usually caused by over watering or poor watering practices. It is always better to water these plants at the base when possible, instead of dousing the stalks and foliage. Overhead watering is sometimes difficult to avoid, and won't necessarily cause a problem, but under certain conditions might. Watering early in the day is the best approach if one must water the plants from above or from a distance.

Summary - There are many different species of bellflower to choose from. Many different colors are available, although blue is the most common flower color among the various species. One can find many varieties of dwarf bellflower or smaller plants which are ideal for borders and bedding arrangements. At the other extreme are the taller plants such as Campanula lactiflora which, when planted in small groups, make outstanding background specimens.


 

 


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