is a genus of flowering plants in family Campanulaceae, comprising about 300 species. It has a common name of Bell flower
, taken from their bell-shaped flowers. Campanula also means 'little bell' in Latin. It is native to temperate regions in Northern Hemisphere, with the highest diversity in the Mediterranean region.
Campanula species are annual, biennial or perennial plants, and have range of sizes and grow habits. They can be dwarf arctic and alpine species which grow under 10cm, or the large grassland and woodland species growing to 2m tall. The leaves are alternate and vary in shape on a single plant, with bigger and broader leaves at the base of stem, and smaller and narrower leaves higher up the plant. In many species, the leaves and stems contain white latex. The flowers are beautiful bell-shaped, comes in panicles and have five-lobed corolla ( 2-5cm or longer) of mostly blue or purple, sometimes white or pink colors. The fruit is a capsule containing numerous tiny seeds.
The most famous species includes the Campanula rotundiflora
, known as Harebell in England and Bluebell in Scotland; Campanula medium
which is commonly known as Canterbury Bells, is a cultivated garden plant in the United Kingdom.
Campanula species are food plant for larvae of several Lepidoptera (Butterflies and moths) species such as Common Pug, Dor Moth, Ingrailed Clay, Lime-speck Pug and Mouse Moth.
Campanula are easy to grow and different species have different requirements, but avoid waterlogged soil. Propagation is by seed in spring; division in spring or autumn; and cuttings in autumn. Pests and diseases are slugs, snail, and mildew.