marsh bellflower

(Campanula aparinoides)

Conservation Status
marsh bellflower (var. grandiflora)
 
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

     
  NatureServe

NNR - Unranked

SNR - Unranked

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
Wetland Indicator Status
     
  Great Plains

OBL - Obligate wetland

     
  Midwest

OBL - Obligate wetland

     
  Northcentral & Northeast

OBL - Obligate wetland

     
           
 
Description
 
 

Marsh bellflower is a 6 to 36 tall perennial forb that rises from slender underground stems (rhizomes) very shallow roots.

The stems are weak, loosely spreading, and usually reclining on or tangled with adjacent vegetation. They are often somewhat 3-angled and are sparingly branched toward the top. They are slightly rough to the touch due to short, stiff, downward-curved hairs.

The leaves are alternate, linear to narrowly lance-shaped, ¾ to 3½ long, and up to 3 16 wide, on average 6 to 12 times as long as wide. They become gradually shorter as they ascend the stem. They are attached to the stem without a stalk. They are angled or tapered at the base and short-tapered to a point at the tip. They are rough to the touch with short, stiff, backward-curved hairs along the margins and on the midvein on the underside. The margins sometimes have a few minute teeth.

The inflorescence is a solitary flower on a long, slender stalk at the end of the stem and each branch.

The flowers are funnel-shaped to more-or-less bell-shaped and 3 16 to ½ long. There are 5 sepals, 5 petals, 5 stamens, and 1 style. The sepals (calyx) are green, fused at the base into a 1 32 to 1 16long tube, then separated into 5 equal, triangular to lance-shaped, 1 32 to 1 16long lobes. The petals are pale blue to almost white. They are fused at the base into a 1 32 to 1 16long tube, then separated into 5 equal, to 5 16 long lobes. The filaments on the stamens are dilated and hairy at the base. The style is 1 32 to 1 16long at flowering time and has a usually 3-lobed stigma at the tip.

The fruit is an inversely egg-shaped to nearly globe-shaped, 1 32 to 3 16 long and wide capsule.

 
     
 

Height

 
 

6 to 36

Marsh bellflower has a weak stem and usually relies on adjacent plants for support. The literature for this species gives its height as 20 (Yatskievych) or 24 (Chadde). Online Virtual Flora of Wisconsin has it at up to 36 tall. Based on personal observations, MinnesotaSeasons.com agrees with the latter source.

 
     
 

Flower Color

 
 

Pale blue to almost white

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
     
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Wet. Sedge meadows, marshes, bogs, calcareous fens,and coniferous swamps. Full sun.

 
     
 
Ecology
 
 

Flowering

 
 

July to September

 
     
 

Pests and Diseases

 
 

 

 
     
 
Use
 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 28, 29, 30.

 
         
         
 

Nativity

 
 

Native

 
         
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Kingdom Plantae (green algae and land plants)  
  Subkingdom Viridiplantae (green plants)  
  Infrakingdom Streptophyta (land plants and green algae)  
  Superdivision Embryophyta (land plants)  
  Division Tracheophyta (vascular plants)  
  Subdivision Spermatophytina (seed plants)  
  Class Magnoliopsida (flowering plants)  
  Superorder Asteranae  
 

Order

Asterales (sunflowers, bellflowers, fanflowers, and allies)  
 

Family

Campanulaceae (bellflower)  
  Subfamily Campanuloideae (bellflower)  
 

Genus

Campanula (bellflowers)  
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

Two varieties of marsh bellflower were traditionally recognized based on the shape of the leaves, the size of the corollas, and the size of the seed capsules. Campanula aparinoides var. aparinoides leaves are narrowly lance-shaped and up to 2 long, on average 6 times as long as wide. C. a. var. grandiflora has slightly larger corollas; the leaves are narrowly lance-shaped and up to 3½ long, on average 12 times as long as wide; and the seed capsules are larger. Both varieties occur in Minnesota. According to Voss (Michigan Flora, 1996), the distinctions are not sharp. Currently, almost no sources recognize the varieties.

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

Campanula aparinoides var. aparinoides

Campanula aparinoides var. grandiflora

Campanula aparinoides var. uliginosa

Campanula uliginosa

Palustricodon aparinoides

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

bedstraw bellflower

eastern marsh bellflower

marsh bellflower

marsh harebell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
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MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
 
    marsh bellflower (var. grandiflora)   marsh bellflower (var. grandiflora)  
           
    marsh bellflower (var. grandiflora)   marsh bellflower (var. grandiflora)  
           
    marsh bellflower (var. grandiflora)   marsh bellflower (var. grandiflora)  

 

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