Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Balloon Flower

This year I planted this, 

which I had not tried in my garden before.  I bought it based on just the name alone: balloon flower.  Intruiguing, eh?  Its scientific name is no less wonderful: Platycodon grandiflores "fuji blue."   Sounds like a cross between a platypus and oxycodone, with a crayola crayon tacked on the end.

In a rare show of gardening success for the Common Household, it is blooming like mad.  I have been caring for it, watering it through the heat spell, weeding around it, and murmuring encouragement to it.

The bud started out looking fairly innocent.  Then, true to its name, it began swelling like a balloon.  And it turned faintly blue.  

Then one day, it popped open, a beautiful fuji blue inside!  

Then the other buds began to swell.  Yesterday they popped open  splendiferously in the best flower display my gardens have ever seen.  All these flowers on one little plant!
One flower is suffering from the heat, but the rest are thriving.
But here is perhaps the best surprise of all:  it looks like this plant is a perennial, hardy in zones 3 through 9!  There is a chance it might come back again next year, with no work on my part.  This I like.
Do you think the spent flower socket looks a little like Audrey II in "Little Shop of Horrors"?


Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I like it! It's so blue and cheerful.

Cassi Renee said...

I have that same flower in one of my gardens. It's slow to show up in spring, so it might be worth marking the spot in some way in the fall. I often find myself looking for it in the spring, when other things are already showing up.

Angie said...

Very cool! I love flowers!