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Primula selections


Take a walk down the primrose path and you'll never look back! Primroses are a classic cottage flower and are popular with collectors. They covet the hundreds of different primroses available, especially some of the tiny rare alpine types.

Many are staples of cottage gardens and rock gardens, while others provide spring color to damp places, rain gardens, and bog gardens. Their basal rosettes of oval leaves are often puckered or are very smooth. The colorful flowers may be borne singly or rise in tiered clusters, or even spikes. Provide humus-high soil that retains moisture and some shade for best results.

Sun,Part Sun,Shade
Plant Type:
Plant Height:
2 inches-2 1/2 feet tall, depending on variety
Plant Width:
4 inches-2 feet wide, depending on variety
Flower Color:
Whites, pinks, lavender, purple, red, yellows, orange, and green flowers, depending on variety
Bloom Time:
Blooms in spring, depending on variety
Landscape Uses:
Containers,Beds & Borders
Special Features:
Flowers,Attractive Foliage,Fragrant,Attracts Butterflies,Tolerates Wet Soil,Deer Resistant,Easy to Grow
Top Varieties

(Primula vialii) has a rosette of large puckered leaves, from which rise leafless stems topped with startling spikes of small brilliant purple flowers, light crimson in bud. They prefer moist alkaline soil. They may reach 2 feet tall. Zones 5-8
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(Primula japonica) belongs to the candelabra group of primroses since their flower 1-to 2-foot stems bear tiers of flowers, candelabra style. The flowers may be in any shade of pink or red as well as white, some are accented with a dark eye. Their rosettes of 6- to 12-inch-long, spoon-shaped leaves are substantial. Zones 4-8
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(Primula vulgaris 'Quaker's Bonnet') has double light orchid flowers that are borne singly, but there are plenty of them. Plants grow 6-9 inches tall. Zones 4-8
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Plant It With
Japanese painted fern

The red- and gray-variegated triangular fronds of Japanese painted fern combine well with Japanese primroses in moist shaded places.


Tall foxgloves interspersed with English or Japanese primroses make a typical spring combination in light shade.


Blooming at the same time, in wet places yellow flag iris combines well with giant primrose.