There are various sections of Primulas, including primroses and auriculas. Hybridists have been very successful, and there are now many beautiful forms and colours obtainable, but mostly in reds, yellows, and white. Some of the species will thrive by the waterside and in bog gardens, while others make fine border plants. There is also a section which thrives particularly well when grown on the rockery.
The greatest number of species prefer a compost of loam, leaf-mould and sand with a little road grit, but a few prefer a moist peaty soil. Before planting (in autumn or spring), it is advisable to dress the soil with well-decayed cow manure.
These plants are also grown for exhibition. Many of the species may be grown in the cool greenhouse and, grown under warm conditions, they will flower earlier in the year and make excellent decoration on the greenhouse shelves.
The most popular method of increase of the hardy species is by seeds sown when ripe, a light soil being best for this purpose. The seedlings should be set in a cool, airy place in partial shade. As soon as they are large enough to handle, they should be pricked out to 2 in. apart. They may also be increased by division, and most of the Alpine species are kept alive by this means. Another method is by cuttings taken in April or May.
Some of the best varieties for the amateurs garden are:
Polyanthus Snowjlake, large milk-white flowers.
Primula acaulis fl. JJZ., double Primrose.
Acaulis ccerulea, blue primroses, shaded purple.
Acaulis virginalis, large snow-white flowers.
PLANTS FOR THE ROCK GARDEN:
Auricula alpina, golden, fragrant, May. 3 in.
A. Bauhini, amber, leaves margined white, May. 5 in.
Old Red Dusty Miller, wallflower-red, fragrant, May.
Beesiana, rosy-purple, May. 12 in.
Capitaa Mooreana, violet, May. 9 in.
Japonica san-guinca, crimson. 2 ft.
Siberica, pale lilac, May. 9-12 in.
Secundiflora, rich crimson, dwarf, June.
Pulmonaria (Lung-wort). Hardy her-baceous plants with ornamental foliage mostly grown in the borders and on the rockery.
Plant in autumn or spring in a light, ordinary soil, in a partially-shaded situation. When lifting they should be replanted in fresh soil. This should be done every four or five years.
Increase by division of the roots in autumn or spring. Seeds may also be sown in spring in a deep soil.
The best varieties for cultivation in the amateurs garden are: Rubra, carmine-rose, Murch.
Saccarata, Mrs. Moon, rosy flowers with mottled foliage.
Angustifolia, Gentian-blue, March-May.