Phacelia campanularia A. Gray
Desertbells, Blue bells, Desert Canterbury bells
Hydrophyllaceae (Waterleaf Family)
USDA Symbol: PHCA3
An 8-16 in. annual with 1 in. wide, bell-shaped, deep-blue flowers. The flowers, with protruding golden anthers, are arranged in rolled, 1-sided racemes; the raceme unrolling as the flowers open. A stiff, erect, leafy, glandular-hairy plant with dark blue, bell-like flowers in loose coils at end of a branched open cluster. Leaves are round to oval; both they and the reddish stems are covered with fine hairs.
In a spring following a wet winter, thousands of these plants will bloom, forming masses of deep rich blue. The similar California Bell (P. minor), found in southern California and northern Baja California, has a violet corolla with a cream spot on each lobe, the opening slightly constricted, and hair on the expanded stamen bases.
From the Image Gallery
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Blue
Bloom Time: Feb , Mar , Apr
DistributionUSA: CA , NY
Native Distribution: Deserts of s. CA
Native Habitat: Dry, sandy places below 4000 ft.
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil pH: Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
Soil Description: Well-drained, sandy or gravelly soil.
Conditions Comments: Hairs on the stems and leaves give some people a mild rash.
Value to Beneficial InsectsSpecial Value to Native Bees
This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.
PropagationDescription: Sow seeds in late summer or early fall. Sow on top of soil as light is needed for germination.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: No special treatment is necessary.
Commercially Avail: yes
Find Seed or Plants
Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR
BibliographyBibref 995 - Native Landscaping from El Paso to L.A. (2000) Wasowski, S. and A. Wasowski
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Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Phacelia campanularia in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Phacelia campanularia in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Phacelia campanularia
MetadataRecord Modified: 2012-06-18
Research By: TWC Staff