Bells of Ireland Flower Seeds
(Moluccella laevis) Annual. 90-110 days to maturity.
Definitely a piece of interest in the flower garden and incredible in bouquets! Bells of Ireland displays gorgeous light green flower spikes, made up of little cups (calyxes), each one guarding a tiny white blossom at its center. Known also as Shellflower. One of the more interesting flowers we’ve come across.
*** Bells of Ireland is naturally slow and erratic to germinate.
Growth Habit: Upright, 3” branching stems with spiked flowers of bell shaped 2” calyxes. Will self seed.
Sun Requirements: Sun, part shade
Soil Preference: Average, well-drained soil
When to Plant: Direct seed after last frost date OR start indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost date.
Stratification: Chill seeds for 1-2 weeks at 2-4°C before sowing ( Cold stratification will significantly improve germination. ) Place seed packet in the fridge inside a sealed plastic bag to chill seeds.
For more information on cold stratification, visit the Incredible Seeds Library.
How to Plant:
Direct sow: sow seeds after the last frost date and cover only lightly with soil - Bells of Ireland seeds need light to germinate. Seeds should germinate in 21-30 days. Thin young plants to 1 foot apart.
Transplant: sow on soil surface in containers or compostable cells. Cover only very lightly with soil and seed needs light to germinate. Harden off and transplant after the risk of frost has passed. Space 1 foot apart. * be careful with taproot when transplanting
When / How to Harvest: Harvest regularly to encourage blooms on side shoots. For fresh cut, harvest when bells are half open and green; for dried, harvest when bells are firm to touch.
Uses: Bells of Ireland have beautiful bright green spikes that make a lovely filler in fresh arrangements. When dried, the bells turn a creamy white, and are beautiful in dried arrangements.