Chinese bellflower (Platycodon grandiflorus) | How to Grow Balloon Flowers Plant

Chinese bellflower (Platycodon grandiflorus) | How to Grow Balloon Flowers Plant

Balloon Flower Plant (platycodon grandiflorus)

This herbaceous flowering perennial is the sole member of the genus Platycodon and is found in the family Campanulaceae. This plant comes from East Asia (China, Korea, Japan, and the Russian Far East). Also known as the Chinese bellflower, balloon flowers plant, platycodon grandiflorus, or platycodon, this flower is commonly referred to by its balloon-shaped buds.

This herbaceous perennial has dark green leaves and blue flowers in late summer. Its height and width are 60 cm. Its flower buds swell like a balloon before fully opening, making it stand out among plants. Similar to its relatives, campanulas, its petals are fused into a bell shape at the base.

In addition to exhibiting neuro-protective, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, antiallergenic, insulin resistance, and cholesterol-lowering properties, the extracts and purified platycoside compounds (saponins) of the balloon flower root may be used in food supplements.

Balloon Flowers Plant

Overview Balloon Flowers Plant

Scientific name                       Platycodon grandiflorus

Common name                       Chinese bellflower, Japanese bellflower, Balloon flower.

Plant type                                 Flowering perennial plant

Sun                                              Partial shade

Soil                                           Well-drained, slightly acidic soil

Soil pH                                         5.5- 7.5

Flower colors                           Blue, Pink,  and White.

Blooming time                         Summer

Zone                                            3-9

Chinese bellflower (Platycodon grandiflorus)

How to Grow and Care Balloon Flowers Plant

It is easy to plant these plants in your garden without fear that they will encroach on your other plants.

Growing from Seeds

Spring is the ideal time to sow seeds directly in the garden or start them indoors. Make sure to cover seeds only 1/16 inch deep with soil. The container should be placed in a warm environment until the seeds germinate. The seeds can be transplanted outside once the weather has warmed up. Directly planted seeds, on the other hand, are unlikely to flower in their first year. Plant them after the last frost date in your area, however.

Growing from Cuttings

The balloon flower is a favorite of gardeners because it is a fast and hardy plant, so in fact, the more the merrier, but you do have to be cautious about how it propagates. Balloon flowers generally do not tolerate division, since their deep roots don’t like to be disturbed. Stem cuttings are the best method of propagation. To bare the stem, trim the lower foliage off a 4-inch length of stem using sterile, sharp pruners. Afterward, pot it in moist soil and apply the rooting hormone. While you wait for roots to take hold, keep your soil moist but not soggy. The cutting will have roots once you see leaf growth and feel resistance when tugged gently. Plants are then ready for transplantation into a garden.


Even though they grow well in partial shade, you’ll get more flowers if you give them eight or more hours of sunshine each day. You can leave them in some shade, and they might actually prefer shady areas where the afternoon sun is particularly hot.


Maintain a consistent level of moisture in the soil of young plants. As soon as they are established, balloon flowers crave a moderate amount of water in their soil. However, they can withstand short periods of drought. Water them only if the soil becomes dry after a long period without rainfall.


As for the soil, it prefers a well-drained, slightly acidic one, and while it can tolerate some drying, it requires plenty of moisture. Clay soil is not a suitable environment for these plants. The soil pH should be between 5.5 and 7.5.

Temperature and Humidity

If you have tall plants with heavy blooms, you should stake them to prevent them from toppling over. Warm temperatures in the range of 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit are ideal for balloon flowers. You should provide afternoon shade if you live in a hotter climate.

Providing they have the right amount of soil moisture, balloon flowers can tolerate humid or dry air conditions.


Rich soil is typically enough to allow balloon flowers to grow without supplemental feeding. However, a layer of compost in the fall can provide them with energy to replenish what they used during the growing season. Early in the spring, apply an all-purpose, slow-release fertilizer to poor soil.

Balloon Flowers Plant

Pruning balloon plant

Pruning should be done as soon as the new growth is visible in the spring. It is important to remove dying or old stems at the base, but be careful not to damage the crown of the plant. Keeping your plants full of flowers all season long can be achieved by combining balloon flower pruning with dead-leafing (removal of spent leaves). By removing the fading bloom and the top leaves, you can keep more flowers coming.

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