Growing Guide
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Canterbury Bells

Herbaceous Biennial Flower

Campanula medium
Campanulaceae Family

Bring an English cottage garden to your yard with these charming, old-fashioned biennial plants. They bear racemes of bell-like flowers in shades of pink, white, purple and blue.

Site Characteristics
  • full sun
  • part shade

Soil conditions:

  • requires well-drained soil
Canterbury Bells prefer moist soil and cool weather with low humidity.

Hardiness zones:

  • 5 to 8
Plant Traits

Lifecycle: biennial

Ease-of-care: moderately difficult

Height: 1.5 to 3 feet

Spread: 0.75 to 1.25 feet

Bloom time:

  • late spring
  • early summer
  • mid-summer

Flower color:

  • blue
  • violet
  • white
  • pink

Foliage color: medium green

Foliage texture: medium

Shape: upright

Shape in flower: flower stalks with sprays of flowers

The flowers are borne on long racemes.

Special Considerations
Special characteristics:
  • non-aggressive
  • non-invasive
  • not native to North America - Europe
Special uses:
  • cut flowers
Growing Information
How to plant:

Propagate by seed - Start seeds outdoors in late spring or early summer in a nursery area of the garden. Thin and grow for the summer in the holding area, overwinter, and transplant into the flower garden the following spring.

Days to emergence: 14 to 21

Maintenance and care:
May require staking. The first year, grow this biennial in a nursery bed and overwinter covered with a thick mulch layer. Transplant into the garden the next spring. Discard after the flowering season. To maintain an annual supply of plants, start new seeds in the nursery bed each year.

More growing information: How to Grow Perennials

‘Dwarf Bella Mix’: blue, lilac, white or pink flowers on dwarf (14” tall) plants. Flowers 4 weeks after sowing.

‘Double Melton Bells Mix’: 3’ tall plants with striking, prolific double blooms in dark and pale pink, or dark purple.

‘Champion’ Series: 2’ tall plants with flowers in either blue or pink. The flowers are large (1 ½” wide) and prolific.