Platycodon grandiflorus is an easy to grow hardy perennial that lives up to its name with its balloon like flowers.
It is native to eastern Asia where it grows on the grassy slopes in hills and mountains.
The plant can grow to around 600mm (24”) high, with a similar spread and flowers from June to August.
The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)
Seeds can be collected after flowering.
Week 13: Sow seeds in trays under glass and germinate at 20°C (68°F)
Germination can take up to three weeks.
Week 18: Prick out into 75mm (3") pots of potting compost and grow on in a cold frame until planting out time.
The seedlings are fragile and should be handled with care when pricking out.
Divide and transplant established plants, if weather conditions allow.
Alternatively, pot up into suitable sized pots and grow on in a coldframe until planting out time.
The poisonous slow growing fleshy roots resent disturbance.
Week 40: Plant out in a sunny or dappled shaded position at 400mm centres in acid, neutral or alkaline well