Also known as spiral and earleaf bellflower, this rhizomatous herbaceous perennial is a member of the Campanulaceae family that also includes ladybells (Adenophora), balloon flower, and Lobelia). It is native to the mountains of Europe including the Pyrenees, Alps, and Carpathian where it grows in the cracks in the rocks. Plants form spreading mats of bright green nearly round leaves and produce clusters of nodding 3/4″ diameter blue-violet flowers on wiry stems in summer. Fairy’s thimble is an excellent choice for the front of the border, containers, along pathways, or in a rock garden, wall garden, or cottage garden. The generic name, Campanula, is the diminutive of the late Latin word campana meaning bell, and refers to the form of the flowers. The specific epithet, cochlearifolia, comes from the Latin words cochlear, meaning spoon, and folia, meaning leaf, and refers to the shape of the leaf.
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Bloom: Clusters of nodding 3/4″ diameter blue-violet flowers on wiry stems in summer.
Size: 4-6″ H x 12″ W
Light:Full sun to part shade
Soil:Average, medium moist, well-drained
Hardiness: Zones 6-7
Care: Low maintenance
Pests and Diseases: Snails, slugs
Propagation: Seed, basal cuttings
Companion Plants: Rock thyme (Acinos alpinus), Allium flavum var. minus , Dianthus microlepsis, yellow iceplant (Delosperma nubigenum ), Lewisia
var. alba (white flowers)
‘Miranda’ (icy blue flowers)
‘Pallida’ (blue flowers up to 1″ diameter)
Photo Credit: Ghislain 118 Wikimedia Commons