Commonly known as balloon flower (Platycodon grandiflorus), this perennial produces puffed-up buds that open into purple-blue flowers in mid- to late summer, possibly with scattered rebloom in autumn. The flowers of this strain, ‘Axminster Streaked’, are speckled and streaked with varying amounts of white. The plants may also produce some predominantly white flowers with purple spots or streaks, as well as some solid purple or solid white blooms. (Figure that about 30 percent of the plants are likely to have true-to-type flowers, though I think that percentage is slowly improving as I carefully rogue out the solid-colored plants each year.) The foliage of balloon flower turns yellow, sometimes shaded with maroon, in fall. Plants may flower the first year if started indoors in spring, at a rather sprawling 12 to 18 inches tall. Established plants usually reach about 3 feet tall, with stronger, more upright stems. Full sun to partial shade. Zones 3 or 4 to 8.
Interested in the origins of this unique strain? It was discovered by Lynda Windsor of RD Plants in Devon, U.K., in 1990. Here is the story: New Platycodon. I have been growing it since 2008, from seed acquired through a seed exchange.
Collected in early October 2023. At least 20 seeds. Shipping to US addresses only.
Please read the germination information as well before ordering.