Spotlight On: Balloon Flowers

Beautiful, long-blooming and underused, Balloon Flower is an easy perennial that brings a touch of fun to the home landscape. Balloon Flower gets its name from how the flower buds puff up like balloons before they finally open, children love to “pop” the buds (and this doesn’t hurt the flowers!). They enjoy full sun and good drainage and prefer to not be disturbed once planted. The roots are eaten as a vegetable in Korea.


Care: Balloon Flower blooms in late summer and bloom time can be prolonged by deadheading or cutting it back. It has a milky sap that can be sticky while deadheading. Balloon flower often requires staking to support the large, heavy flowers and buds.


iScape it!: Try Balloon Flower in your yard using iScape. Add it to a bed in full or part sun without even digging a hole, just snap a photo of the area, or use the new Augmented Reality feature in iScape and see how it looks in your space. So simple, so easy… iScape it!


Balloon Flower

Scientific Name: Platycodon gradiflorus

Light: Full sun to part shade

Zones: Zone 3, zone 4, zone 5, zone 6, zone 7, zone 8

Plant Type: Perennial

Plant Height: 24 inches

Plant Width: 18 inches

Bloom: Blue-purple blooms starting in June

Landscape Uses: Perennial borders, containers, rock gardens

Special Features: Long bloom time


A long-blooming, underused perennial for sun to part sun, use Balloon Flower with Coneflowers and Phlox for a mix of colors and textures in your garden beds and borders. Make sure Balloon Flower has good drainage and is close to walks and paths for little fingers to “pop” it without stampeding on other garden flowers. This wonderful garden addition often needs staking to remain upright.