Campanula Species, Bluebells of Scotland, Roundleaf Bellflower, Scottish Harebell

Campanula rotundifolia

Family: Campanulaceae (kam-pan-yew-LAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Campanula (kam-PAN-yoo-luh) (Info)
Species: rotundifolia (ro-tun-dih-FOH-lee-uh) (Info)
Synonym:Campanula allophylla
Synonym:Campanula angustifolia
Synonym:Campanula asturica
Synonym:Campanula bielzii
Synonym:Campanula bocconei


Alpines and Rock Gardens



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Flowers are fragrant

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round

Suitable for growing in containers


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade


All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Anchorage, Alaska (2 reports)

Happy Jack, Arizona

Blackhawk-camino Tassajara, California

Perris, California

Santa Ana, California

Denver, Colorado

Telluride, Colorado

Wheat Ridge, Colorado

Cherry Valley, Illinois

Mount Prospect, Illinois

Wilmette, Illinois

West Lafayette, Indiana

Cedar Falls, Iowa

Elkton, Maryland

Roslindale, Massachusetts

Saint Helen, Michigan

Minneapolis, Minnesota (2 reports)

Belton, Missouri

Big Timber, Montana

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Reynoldsburg, Ohio

Mount Hood Parkdale, Oregon

Orefield, Pennsylvania

Leesburg, Virginia

Chimacum, Washington

Eatonville, Washington

Madison, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Dec 12, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

Pretty plants for the rock-garden, very long blooming. Individual plants are short-lived and rely on self-sowing for continuity in the garden. This will not make a weed-suppressing groundcover.

I've never found them to spread underground. The invasive bellflower with the thick root is C. rapunculoides.


On Apr 27, 2013, altagardener from Calgary, AB (Zone 3b) wrote:

From the photo you show, your problem plant is not Campanula rotundifolia but is instead Campanula rampunculoides, which is indeed an extremely invasive weed. It would be great if you could move the photo to the right species.


On Jun 13, 2012, Wildernessgirl from Mountain Village, CO wrote:

I use it as a border in my wildflower garden and love them. They are very easy to grow and don't require much from me. They bloom all summer into fall. I love how dependable they are. One or two this week are struggling because I overwatered them when growing new grass. I have had no problem with them being invasive. I wish the seed from plants would spread and grow more. I have about 15 that I planted myself.


On Jun 17, 2011, paulks from Denver, CO wrote:

Beware of this plant. I enjoyed Harebell Campanula for about 10 years (and it was in place even longer--the previous owners of my house planted it). It provided a low-maintenance bank of purple bank during the summer months. The problem developed two years ago. A devastating hail storm and tornado-like wind stuck my Denver neighborhood in August 2009. The wind must have spread Harebell seeds far and wide. Since then, the plant has overtaken the rest of my garden, infiltrating soil and crevices between rocks and paving stones. Neighbors are now battling the blight too.

This plant has finger-sized tubers (rhizomes) buried about 8" below the surface. Pulling the stem out does not kill the plant. The tuber sends up new shoots several weeks later. It is very difficult to dig up.... read more


On Mar 27, 2011, hairyjo from Danville, CA wrote:

I have mine in a pot and it is one of my favorite plants in my garden. It starts blooming in March and never stops.


On Jun 4, 2009, Erutuon from Minneapolis, MN wrote:

I bet the invasive plant one person mentioned is actually creeping bellflower (Campanula rapunculoides), which looks somewhat similar but spreads by runners.

I've seen harebell in the cliffs along the St. Croix and it seems the very opposite of invasive.

[edit] Got the plant last year at a local garden center and planted it in a patch of garden recently converted from lawn. It's thriving last year it sent up one flower spike, then a lot of new flower spikes from the leaf axils of the first spike. This year it's sending up lots of flower stems, as thick as grass.

It seems to me that it likes good deep soil; probably it only grows in cliffs because it'd be overwhelmed by other plants in more favorable soil.

So far I haven't seen ... read more


On Oct 15, 2008, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

In my opinion harebells loves poor soil, not just "tolerate it". In fact the only place in Minnesota that I have seen it is either on the North Shores, growing between cracks of rocks near Lake Superior or near large outcrops of rocks - recently I saw a blooming speciment at O' Brien State Park growing on the small rocky cliffs that drop down to the St. Croix river. They also seem to like sandy environments where the sands are more unpredictable or less competitions from taller plants. I also have the feeling it is rated close to zone 2 hardy as I have seen it in Alaska in boreal and almost alpine habitation - I think I have seen it growing in areas where glaciers had retreated (in rocky and sandy locations) but is not 100% sure. From my observation it seem to be at the most common in bore... read more


On Jul 29, 2008, WILLIEB from Chimacum, WA wrote:

I have h ad this plant for 8-9 years. It has not spread all over my garden! It is in partial shade, and has been very slow growing. I would be happy for it to grow a little faster! It is one of my favorite flowers.


On Jul 23, 2007, dkm65 from Cedar Falls, IA (Zone 4b) wrote:

Some comments state that this species has naturalized in the U.S., but it is a U.S. native (in fact it is circumboreal, so native to much of the northern hemisphere). Other comments state it is invasive, but at least where I live (NE Iowa), I wish it were more assertive, as it is anything but aggressive in our native prairie garden.

It is a very delicate looking plant, and will therefore tend to intermingle with other surrounding plants. It can have a bit of difficulty standing up on its own, at least in the first couple years while the roots get established, and does best when grown in crowds.

Very attractive, showy flower that attracts hummingbirds. Ours bloom for months, from late spring/early summer into August.

Good drought tolerance, & ... read more


On Mar 2, 2007, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Scottish Harebell, Bluebells of Scotland, Harebell Campanula rotundifolia is Naturalized in Texas and other States,


On Mar 24, 2006, SW_gardener from (Zone 6a) wrote:

Grown in part shade, it forms a nice clump that flowers most of the summer. The last year or two I've had some sort of disease on my Campanulas that twists and contorts them....ending up with me pulling the plants so that it won't infect them all. Has anyone else had this? Or know what causes it? I beleive it's viral..but I'm not sure. If anyone has info on this let me know please! Thanks :)


On Jan 18, 2005, LilyLover_UT from Ogden, UT (Zone 5b) wrote:

I haven't found this to be invasive in my garden. I started mine from seed. The plants spread slowly to form a patch, and they bloom all summer long. The lavender-blue bells are very pretty.


On Apr 24, 2004, drewfondrk wrote:

I noticed this plant growing in our neighborhood and decided to add it to our garden. Big mistake! It may be the most invasive plant I've ever seen. It spreads rapidly by roots and seeds and once established it is nearly impossible to eradicate. Use it only in areas where it can be contained.


On Nov 8, 2000, poppysue from Westbrook, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

Campanula rotundifolia Scottish harebell is a perennial and hardy from zones 3-9. It forms a loose rosette of rounded leaves and sends up multiple wiry stems with nodding, 1-inch, lilac flowers. Plants grow 12-15 inches tall in full sun or partial shade. Scottish harebells have become naturalized throughout the Northern Hemisphere and theyre a nice plant for a wildflower garden. Theyre tolerant of poor soils and will re-seed themselves through the garden.