Million Bells, Magic Bells - Care and Hibernation

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Million-bells - magic bells - Calibrachoa

Calibrachoa, million-bells or magic bells - however this member of the nightshade family is called, he is an eye-catcher. With the large flowers and the densely growing, hanging shoots, the magic bell is ideal for the culture in the traffic light. Drawn in tub, however, it is an attractive jewelry. Provided, of course, she receives a suitable location and the right care. Because their claims are small, but they still want to be fulfilled.


The sunnier, the better. The Zauberglöckchen gets best a full sun to the south. If she gets this, she shows a particularly lush and long flowering. Even in partial shade, it can still thrive well. The location of the million-bells does not need to be overprotected. Moderate wind and rain have little effect on the Calibrachoa. Even the flowers usually withstand these influences well.

Culture in traffic light or bucket

Because the magic bell grows hanging and its shoots can reach a length of up to half a meter, the culture in a traffic light is ideal. However, it can also thrive in the bucket, if it is high enough or in addition to a pedestal.


The demands on the substrate are quite easy to meet in Calibrachoa. It should be loose and nutritious. On the other hand, he must not incline to waterlogging and solidification. Kübelerde is optimal, enriched with compost and loosened up with sand, gravel or coconut fibers. Potting soil is also suitable if it is well drained and regularly fertilized.

to water

Due to its sunny location, the magic bells can have a very high water consumption. At the same time it damages waterlogged but fast. It is therefore best to pour alluvial water or submerge the traffic light in the water until no more air bubbles rise from the earth. In order to avoid permanent wet soil, the planter should have a good drain or be equipped with a drainage layer. On hot days, a repetition may be necessary despite the intensive watering. For this purpose, the best solution is lime-free, soft water. Rainwater is ideal, but stale tap water is also suitable.
Tip: Because a lavish pouring is necessary, there should be nothing under traffic lights or tubs that is sensitive to water.


Million-bells - magic bells - Calibrachoa

Almost as big as the water consumption, is also the nutrient requirement of the magic bells. Every two weeks, the million-bells should be fertilized. For this liquid liquid fertilizers are available, which are directly added to the irrigation water. As an alternative with less effort and slow-release fertilizer can be used in rod form. It is important in any case that a means for flowering plants is chosen. Tip: Pay attention to the color of the flowers. If these fade, the Calibrachoa iron is missing.


One of the most pleasant differences to other flowering balcony plants is the nature of the Million-Bells flowers. These must not be removed by hand after wilting, but are simply overgrown by new buds and 'disappear'. An occasional thinning and a gentle pruning of the magic bells are still useful, as these measures can strengthen the flowering power again and intensify the flowers. For this, it is enough to simply shorten a few inches of each shoot.


The calibrachoa can be propagated in two ways. On the one hand by seeds, on the other hand by cuttings. Since already the extraction of the seeds can be very cumbersome, the propagation by cuttings is much easier. If you still want to sow yourself, you can win the seeds in autumn. The withered flowers form roundish fruiting bodies. These are to be removed as soon as they are brown and dry. In the coming spring, from about March, they may be brought forward. The fruiting bodies open by themselves during the winter, only the seeds have to be shaken out. Sown on cultivation or petunia soil, they are only slightly covered and moistened. In a bright, warm place they germinate very fast.
The propagation via head cuttings works similarly, but the required - about 10 cm long shoots - best in the summer won. They are also placed in moist petunia or potting soil, set bright and warm.
Tip: In the propagation of cuttings cut off all leaves about half, which promotes root growth.


The adult magic bells themselves are only one year old and therefore do not need to be overwintered at all. The situation is different with the young shoots that were raised for reproduction.These can be wintered indoors at temperatures between 12° C and 18° C. The earth must not dry out here but just as little be wet. It is not fertilized during the cold season.


A repotting is only necessary if there is an increase in cuttings. In spring, the young plants are simply placed in larger planters. More is not necessary with this measure.

Typical care mistakes, diseases and pests

Million-bells - magic bells - Calibrachoa

The magic bells are robust, but can still suffer from aphids and white flies. If these pests fall on the leaves, two measures provide a remedy - but they must not be used together. Insecticides based on neem or niem oil have proven to be effective. On the other hand, the natural predators quickly eliminate the parasites. Suitable are ladybugs and parasitic wasps. Also diseases can occur at the Calibrachoa comparatively frequently iron deficiency and wilt occur. These are mostly caused by care mistakes. The iron deficiency is noticeable by fading flower colors and leaves and can be quickly compensated by a suitable fertilizer. The wilt manifests itself, as the name suggests, by withering flowers and leaves. The reason for this is usually waterlogging. Drainage and adapted casting behavior prevent this and can also remedy damage.

Frequently asked questions

  • Is the magic bells poisonous? - As a member of the nightshade family, the magic bells, like so many of its relatives, are poisonous to humans and animals. Living in the household, small children and pets, the million-bells should be out of their reach. Caution is also advised on deciduous leaves and flowers.
  • Why are not the million bells blooming? - Calibrachoa needs plenty of sun, water and nutrients for the power-consuming flowers. If it is too dark, does not get enough water, or does not fertilize, it also reduces its flowering power. Likewise, too moist soil can be the reason for missing flowers.

Worth knowing soon

Millions of little bells means the translation of the English name of the magic bells. The plant convinces above all by its flowers. Although Calibrachoa is a nightshade plant, it loves the sun. It is a hanging plant, which makes good in the balcony box or in the hanging beam. It is also suitable as ground cover. The countless flowers spread all around on the ground. With good care, Million-Bells flowers from May to September. The plant is available in many flower colors, in white, pink, blue-violet, orange-red, dark-red, yellow, apricot and bicoloured varieties.


Mistakenly, million-bells are referred to as miniature tetrapecies. However, it is a separate genus of plants. The advantage over petunias is that they are less sensitive to wind and rain than these.


  • The magic bells are ideal for a full sun. Only there can the flower wealth fully unfold.
  • With a partially shaded location the plant is clear, but there are not quite as many flowers.
  • Shadow is unfavorable.

plant substrate

  • The soil should be nutrient-rich and well drained. Waterlogging is essential to avoid.
  • Drainage on the bottom of the pot is recommended.
  • Ideal is petunia soil to exclude later Eisenchlorosen.
  • One should not put the plants too close, so that they can spread well.

Pouring and fertilizing

  • Million Bells needs a lot of water. During flowering should be watered regularly.
  • In high heat, it may even be necessary to water twice a day, morning and evening.
  • Also, the plant needs many nutrients, so that the countless flowers also open.
  • It is best to use a common liquid fertilizer for flowering plants.
  • In addition, when planting slow-release fertilizer should be incorporated into the soil. The Million Bells are heavyweights.
  • If the youngest leaves lighten, you should also use iron fertilizer. This is especially recommended for hard irrigation water.


By pruning you can still promote the flowering.


  • The magic bell is one year old. Hibernation therefore brings nothing.
  • If you want to try it anyway, the plant should be bright, at about 14/15 ˚C. It has to be ventilated regularly.
  • Watering should be very sparse. In addition, the plant is an aphid magnet in winter quarters. So you have to check regularly.
  • Cut back vigorously in early spring and put it a little warmer.
  • Again pour a little more, so that she starts to exorcise.
  • When exhibiting slowly get used to the sun. Often the overwintering does not succeed.
  • Experienced hobby gardeners do it regularly, so it's worth a try.

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