Soil: any good garden soil
Height: 1 m
Width: 30 cm
The bell-shaped flowers, usually pale blue, mauve or occasionally white, mark these plants out as Campanula relatives. Most are climbers, so are best planted at the bases of small shrubs, which they will decorate with flowers for a second time each year. Flowers repay close inspection, having beautiful, brightly coloured patterns inside, but beware, for most species have a rather unpleasant, foxy smell coming from their foliage. Growth starts late in the spring, and the stems are surprisingly slender for the vigorous growth that follows. In contrast, the fleshy roots are substantial.
Codonopsis rotundifolia var. grandiflora tells us by its name that it has round leaves and large flowers. The latter are greenish yellow, with a pattern of purple veins on the outside. It is one of the twining species, so will do well planted by small shrubs.
9 cm pot £4.00
|Codonopsis clematidea sprawls rather than climbs, and has large, pale blue flowers, with a most beautiful pattern inside.|
|Codonopsis grey-wilsonii is a twining species from Nepal, with lovely large, pale blue flowers.|
|Codonopsis pilosula is a climber, with lots of green bell flowers, sometimes with some purple markings on the outside.|
|Codonopsis tangshen is a climber, growing well through small shrubs, and producing lots of stubby, bell-shaped flowers along its stems, an unusual yellowish-green colour.|
|Codonopsis vinciflora is a particularly attractive climbing species with saucer-shaped dusky lilac blue flowers, well displayed scrambling through a shrub. Less vigorous than many with finely textured, toothed blue-green leaves. May require winter protection.|