Bells of Ireland (Moluccella laevis)

Very closeup shot of the Bells of Ireland. Notice the signature lamium flowers. These flowers are tiny - you can barely see them with the naked eye. When the flowers are done, 4 tiny seeds are left in its place. This is June 21st in East Tennessee.

Common name: Bells of Ireland
Family: Lamiaceae
Genus: Moluccella
Species laevis

Thumbnail by dave
Newark, OH(Zone 5b)

What do you mean by lamium flowers, Dave? Are they the tiny things on the pink stamen thingies? My botanical vocabulary is pretty bad!

I mean the family. It's in the Lamiaceae family, and you'd never know why until you viewed the flowers up close. Beautiful, isn't it?

Newark, OH(Zone 5b)

Yes, they are! I've seen wider shots of this plant, but not the insides of the blooms. Those are really cool. :)

(Carole) Cleveland, TX(Zone 9a)

I'm having a hard time collecting seeds off mine.
And I do have LOTS of bells!!!
I'd love to be able to share the seeds... and I read your instructions on finding them... is it difficult to find them? Or is it just me?

Cajun: I recommend that when the seeds come in (the plant has expired) cut the plant off at the base of the plant and shake the whole thing in a paper bag (or beat the plant against the sides of a clean 5 gallon bucket). The seeds should rain down into the bottom.

There are 4 seeds per bell, and they are located inside the bell where it connects to the stem.

Hope that helps!

Mercer, PA(Zone 5a)

Great foto Dave! We've grown Bells before but I've never noticed the tiny bloom inside the "bell." Thanks for that cool close up shot. I'm gonna try and save the seeds from the ones we have growing now using the technique you mentioned, thanks for that info too!! Oh, and consider me an addicted DG member!!

(Carole) Cleveland, TX(Zone 9a)

I'm so excited! Now I can share seeds!
Wonderful info here!
Here's a picture of the seeds and a bell:

Thumbnail by Cajun2
Mercer, PA(Zone 5a)

Hi Cajun2, were the seeds easy to find and get?

Great photo Cajun2: Would you be willing to upload that to the Bells of Ireland entry in the Plants Database?

Those seeds are hard to germinate if you wait till spring. My recommendation: find the site where you want them, and sow them this fall. They will lay dormant all winter and will germinate in the spring. They need a period of stratification to germinate.


(Carole) Cleveland, TX(Zone 9a)

TC, after I read Dave's description for finding the seeds, it was really very easy. The key was to find the bells that were cream color and papery. In those, the seeds are dark and I believe ripe.

Dave, I'll be happy to upload the picture to the database. I'm glad you like it.

I moved into this house Feb. 1st, so my garden beds were not ready for almost a month. I planted three seeds for the Bells of Ireland in situ around March 10th. I had seedlings up on March 25th. Maybe we'd had enough cold weather here in Texas to chill the seeds enough for 100% germination.

Mercer, PA(Zone 5a)

Thanks Cajun2, I'll remember y'alls directions after mine finish blooming!

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