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How to Grow Virginia Bluebells, Mertensia Flowers


Perennial, Mertensia Virginica

Virginia Bluebells, or Mertensia, are a hardy perennial flower plant. Native to the eastern U.S., it is a woodlands plant. The plant has clusters of blue green leaves. You will need to have patience with this pretty bloomer. When, planted from seeds, Virginia Bluebells may take up to three years to bloom. The flower clusters are purplish in a bell or trumpet shape.

Virginia Bluebell plants look good grown en masse. They also look great in grown in groups in rock garden setting.

Plant Height: 8" - 36"

Plant Blooms: late spring through early summer

Other Names: Climbing Bells, Languid Ladies, Mertensia, Mountain Bluebell, Oysterleaf


Plant Propagation:

Virginia Bluebells are grown from seeds. Plant seeds outdoors in flats or a seed bed that can be left undisturbed. The seeds are very slow to germinate, requiring one to two months. Allow the young plants to grow for a year. In  the second year, transplant them to their permanent home, where they will grow and thrive for many years. Virginia Bluebells are good re-seeders.

Established clumps can also be propagated by plant division. In late summer to early fall, after the blooming period, dig up the clump, divide it into two to four smaller clumps and replant.

Days to Germination: - one to two months. They are very slow to germinate.


How to Grow Virginia Bluebell Plants:

Virginia Bluebell plants grow well in full sun to partial shade. In hotter regions, grow it in partial shade.

The plants like soft, fertile soil.

During the growing season, keep the soil moist, not wet. As the blooming period arrives, you can cut back on the water. Stop applying water when the plants go dormant.

It is important to mulch around the plants, to keep their roots cool, especially when grown in full sun, or hotter regions of the country.

After frost has arrived in the fall, the plants will die down completely. Once they have died, you can cut them back to the ground, if desired, to keep a neat appearance in your flowerbed.


Insect and Disease:

Virginia Bluebells seldom have problems with insects or disease.


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