T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Campanula rotundifolia (Harebell)

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Campanulaceae
Genus: Campanula
Species: C. rotundifolia
Binomial name: Campanula rotundifolia
Common name: Harebell, Scottish Bluebell

Campanula rotundifolia is a hardy, rhizomatous, perennial flowering plant in the bellflower family native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. Harebells are native to dry, nutrient-poor grassland and heaths in Britain, northern Europe, and North America. The plant often successfully colonises cracks in walls or cliff faces and dunes. The name of the genus Campanula derives from the Latin for 'bell', and refers to the shape of the flowers. Campanula rotundifolia is very variable in form.
The papery thin flowers have five violet-blue, pink, or white petals fused together into a bell shape, about 15 mm long and five long, pointed green sepals behind them. The petal lobes are triangular and curve outwards. They occur either solitary or in loose spikes
The stems are creeping at the base, with round leaves, hence the specific name rotundifolia, which means 'round-leaved'; in contrast, the leaves on the erect part of the stem are long and narrow. Flowering occurs December to February.
The seeds are produced in a capsule about 3–4 mm diameter. The seeds are released by pores at the base of the capsule. Seedlings are minute, but established plants can compete with tall grass.
Like other Campanulas, all parts of the plant exude white latex when injured or broken.