Well perhaps this is a slight exaggeration, but there are quite a few Primulas now flowering in the garden and Alpine House. This large and geographically widespread genus, found in the northern hemisphere, are certainly a welcome sign of spring.
Primula vulgaris (L) and Primula vulgaris ssp. vulgaris (R)
The photos show two colour forms of Primula vulgaris. The plants on the left are on an open corner of the Woodland Garden and flower from now until September – a real garden worthy form of the species.
An early drumstick Primula is also starting to flower. Within the three different collections of this species in the Woodland Garden a huge variation in the size of the flower heads can be seen. Flower heads range from golf ball to almost tennis ball size! The larger flowering form hasn’t even started to emerge yet, but does put on quite a show later in spring.
Primula denticulata in the lower Woodland Garden.
Finally, across in the Alpine House, there are examples of wild collected Primula allionii which show the range of colours found in natural populations.
Colours range from the palest pink to really quite vibrant pinks and pale lilac in these Primula allionii.