Delicate but Hardy Ballon Flower

Delicate but Hardy Ballon Flower

Growing Balloon Flowers

The Balloon flower or Platycodon grandiflorus, make their appearance in early summer. Delicate in appearance, with puffy blooms, the Balloon Flower is tougher than it looks. While the flower does prefer cooler summers than Austin typically offers, it is still hardy enough to easily grow in our hotter climate. The flowers, before they open, are shaped a good deal like hot air balloons.

They are clump-forming perennials on long stems that support alternate leaves of light green. The balloon-shaped buds open to a bell-shaped flower with five points of pink, white and blue.

You can enjoy the beautiful colors produced by this flower during the summer months and also appreciate the profusion of golden leaves—before it goes dormant—with which it is covered in autumn.

Plant Balloon Flowers in moist, well-drained soil. They do equally well in full sun or partial shade. The plant needs watering to a depth of 3 inches at least three times weekly. Balloon Flowers are late to grow in the spring and it’s wise to mark the location where you planted them to avoid inadvertently weeding or tramping on them.

You keep the Balloon Flower blooming all summer by investing several minutes each day dead-heading the spent flowers with a snip of the scissors or simply pinching them off. Do this before they turn into seed pods.

However, you should be aware that the Balloon flower is temperamental at times and it’s wise to disperse the seeds generously when planting, 50 to 60 seeds per package.