I am not sure why Shakespeare had his “primrose path” lead to “dalliance”, but a primrose path is certainly a colorful way to lead a visitor to your door. The most characteristic primrose color is yellow, but there are many other colors available. All the species have cheerful spring blooming flowers and most are easy to grow. Some have evergreen leaves and some will rebloom a little in fall. The most commonly sold primroses are hybrids of Primula x Polyantha; these come in just about any color you can name and several of them bicolored. Moreover the :candelabra” types, which include Japanese primrose (P.japonica), have clusters of pink, purple or white flowers atop stems as tall as two feet, and they bloom in late spring.

Japanese star primrose (P.sieboldii) is shorter in rosy shades. It is hardy and The Barnhaven strain is particularly vigorous. If you want to grow “Primrose” then you should prefer part shade and humusy, moisture retentive soil. The candelabra types like the soil to be wet. None of them do well in very hot climate. The species can be grown from seed; hybrids are propagated easily by division. Division also renews vigor. Do it right after they have finished blooming, at least every other year. url primrose1

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