Attractive, easy-to-grow, pest-free plant from Siberia, Japan, and northern China. To 3 ft. tall and 2 ft. wide. Inated, balloonlike buds are carried on slender stalks at the ends of upright stems clad in broadly oval, 1- to 3-in. leaves. Buds open into 2-in., star-shaped, blue-violet owers with purple veins. Bloom begins in early summer and will continue for two months or more if spent blossoms (but not entire stems) are removed. Double-owered types are available, as well as pink- and white-owered types.
Blooms of 'Shell Pink' and 'Mother of Pearl' are soft pink. 'Astra Pink' has soft pink flowers and grows 612 in high. 'Astra Blue' is very dwarf to only 4 in. tall with small blue flowers. 'Fairy Snow' has clear white flowers on a 6- to 10-in.-tall plant. 'Hakone Blue' bears double, bright blue flowers on stems reaching 1824 in. tall. 'Komachi' bears clear blue blossoms that maintain their balloon shape, never opening fully. 'Mariesii', a dwarf to only 11 ft., also bears rich blue blossoms. 'Misato Purple' has deep purple flowers and grows just 8 in. tall. 'Sentimental Blue' has upward- facing blue flowers and grows 612 in. tall.
Plant is deep rooted and takes two or three years to get well established. Dies back completely in fall, and new growth appears quite late in spring; mark position to avoid digging up eshy roots. If you do unearth a root, replant itor the piecesright away. Protect roots from gophers and voles by planting in buried wire cages.