Campanula betulifolia (birch-leaved bellflower)
Campanula betulifolia flowers
Campanula betulifolia K.Koch
Preliminary assessment of Lower Risk - near threatened.
Crevices in volcanic igneous and limestone cliffs, at 250-2,285 m.
About this species
The genus Campanula (the bellflowers), includes a wide variety of plants - many too large for a rock garden - as well as numerous smaller, more compact species. They are found across the Northern Hemisphere but their centre of distribution is in the Caucasus Mountains (the area between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea, which forms the border between Europe and Asia).
Campanula betulifolia is a beautiful, large-flowered species. The second part of the scientific name, the specific epithet, ‘betulifolia’, refers to the leaves, that are similar in appearance to those of Betula (birches).
The German botanist, Karl Koch (1809-1879), described C. betulifolia in 1850. Koch had a broad range of interests, including zoology, geography, anthropology, history and archaeology, but his main interest was botany. From an early age he had dreamed of seeing the Caucasus and in 1836 he began the first of two expeditions to that region. It was possibly on his second expedition (1843-1844), along the Black Sea coast of Turkey, that he collected C. betulifolia.
Campanula denticulata, Campanula betulifolia var. exappendiculata, Campanula finitima, Symphyandra finitima.