Please consider joining the American Primrose Society.

   The American Primrose Society is an active group of primrose enthusiasts across North America and beyond, that sends out a quarterly journal to members, and offers a yearly seed exchange among other activities.
 
 

   The plants listed on this page are sold out as of May 18, 2022. However, they will be offered again, starting this autumn, for late winter or spring delivery, next year.
 
Auricula Primroses

Primula auricula

Auricula primroses have thick, fleshy leaves that are evergreen. They can take severe winter cold, surviving well to −35 to −40°F, with protection such as snow cover. When grown where summers are especially warm, they need a bit of shade during the hottest part of the afternoon.
Primula 'American Beauty'

Primula auricula
'American Beauty'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   'American Beauty' has flowers of clear red with white eyes, and fleshy green leaves. As with most of the auriculas, the height of the flowering stems is typically about half a foot. Cold hardy to −35 to −40°F, with protection such as snow cover.
Primula 'Arctic Fox'

Primula 'Arctic Fox'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   A double flower in reddish-purple, it was selected and named by Linda Tinnity and Jim Fox. Vigorous, thriving in Alaska without protection.
Primula 'Argus'

Primula 'Argus'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   Dark red petals that are a lighter pinkish-red at their edges, 'Argus' is an old primrose that was selected and named in 1897, over one hundred years ago. The eye in the center is a light, cream.
Primula 'Arundel'

Primula 'Arundel'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Arundel' has multi-colored flowers of reddish coloring and creamy green. Sometimes its name is given as, 'Arundel Stripe.' This is a very vigorous plant.
Primula 'Balcom's Semi Double'

Primula 'Balcom's Semi Double'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   Frilly-edged, white petals are often semi-double, although they can also be single.
Primula 'Barbara Weinz'

Primula 'Barbara Weinz'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   The petals are large, and a dark blue-purple, encircling a well formed white eye. The plant is compact and vigorous. This plant was first grown by Barbara Weinz of West Bath, Maine, who grew it from seeds acquired from Herb Dickson.
Primula 'Black Star'

Primula 'Black Star'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   A single row of petals in a very dark red, bordering on black. We have Cheri Fluck of Sherwood, Oregon to thank for sharing this beauty with us.
Primula 'Brown Bess'

Primula 'Brown Bess'

sorry, sold out
$12.95   Reddish-brown shaded to light beige with a gold center.
Primula 'Butter Cream'

Primula 'Butter Cream'

sorry, sold out
$8.95   A pin-eyed flower in a very light yellow.
Primula 'Chehalis Blue'

Primula 'Chehalis Blue'

sorry, sold out
$12.95   'Chehalis Blue' honors the memory of Herb Dickson's nursery that specialized in growing auricula primroses for many years in Chehalis, Washington. A lovely shade of blue with a creamy eye.
Primula 'Cornmeal'

Primula 'Cornmeal'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   The petals are heavily dusted in powdery meal. They are a grayish green with a blaze of black at their bases, creating a circle of inky blackness surrounding an inner circle of white and a yellowish eye. The white circle ages to a similar color as the eye. Grown by Cyrus Happy. Classified as a gray-edged show auricula.
Primula 'Dale's Red'

Primula 'Dale's Red'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   A rich red, slightly lightening at the edges. A vigorous grower.
d'Artagnon'

Primula 'd'Artagnon'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   'Doublet' has double flowers with rich purple petals.
Primula 'Doublet'

Primula 'Doublet'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   'Doublet' has double flowers with rich purple petals.
Primula 'Douglas Black'

Primula 'Douglas Black'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   A “self” of very dark red petals that are near to black.
 

   The plants listed on this page are sold out as of May 18, 2022. However, they will be offered again, starting this autumn, for late winter or spring delivery, next year.
 
Primula 'Emily P.'

Primula 'Emily P.'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Double flowers with creamy petals of very light pink and very light yellow.
Primula 'Eos'

Primula 'Eos'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Named for, Eos, the goddess of the dawn in Greek mythology, this lovely rose colored, semi double is from Rosetta Jones via Cheri Fluck, who graciously shared it. In some years this plant will produce stamens and pollen, for anyone looking to do some hybridizing.
Primula 'Fabuloso'

Primula 'Fabuloso'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Raised by Henry Pugh, the pastel coloring of this flower is amazing. Pale green, yellow and light tan, surrounding a creamy center.
Primula 'Flaxen Honey'

Primula 'Flaxen Honey'

sorry, sold out
$12.95   Light, tannish brown petals.
Primula 'Fred Booley'

Primula 'Fred Booley'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   Multi-petalled double flowers of bluish purple. British nurseries describe the color of this flower as French blue. Bred by Derek Salt.
Primula 'Gordon Douglas'

Primula 'Gordon Douglas'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   Deep reddish-purple, lightening at the edges.
Primula 'Green Shank'

Primula 'Green Shank'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Classified as a “fancy” auricula, 'Green Shank' is equally colored in green, rich red and white, with green and red petals and an inner ring of white.
Primula 'Hawkwood'

Primula 'Hawkwood'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   A fancy auricula, each of its flowers has a thin, fine edge of gray, with maroon-red petals, and a large white eye.
Primula 'Haysome'

Primula 'Haysome'

sorry, sold out
$15.95   This is a show auricula with gray petals and a thin line of black or very dark red, at the petals' bases, surrounding a white eye. The leaves have a dusting of farina coloring them in a silvery cast.
Primula 'Jeffa'

Primula 'Jeffa'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Rich purple petals that lighten at their edges.
Primula 'Lemon Chiffon'

Primula 'Lemon Chiffon'

sorry, sold out
$8.95   Creamy light lemon yellow blossoms, named by Herb Dickson.
Primula 'Lincoln Chestnut'

Primula 'Lincoln Chestnut'

sorry, sold out
$13.95   Double flowers of cinnamon-brown, orignially from Derek Salt.
Primula 'Marmion'

Primula 'Marmion'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   The petals have a green edge and a black base, surrounding a ring of pure white, with the a light yellow inner eye. This beauty grows vigorously.
Primula 'Misty Blue'

Primula 'Misty Blue'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   This is a cross of Primula 'Olivia' and 'Chehalis Blue' that was given to us by Cheri Fluck. Its blue coloring is lighter than than of 'Chehalis Blue.'
Primula 'Osbourne Green'

Primula 'Osbourne Green'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   The shape of this flower is different from most of these primroses. It is long and funnel shaped with a cream center surrounded by an edge of purple tinged green.
Primula 'Pegasus'

Primula 'Pegasus'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   'Pegasus' has intense, blood-red flowers that are double.
Primula 'Remus'

Primula 'Remus'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   A rich, royal purple self with a white eye, and nicely contrasting silvery foliage.
Primula 'RN-25'

Primula 'RN-25'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   'RN-25' is similar in coloring to 'Karen Cordrey,' with colors of green, dark red (almost black) and white.
Primula 'Robinette'

Primula 'Robinette'

sorry, sold out
$13.95   Double flowers. The young flower buds are dark at first, and lighten as they open to a rich, ruby-red.
Primula 'Rolt's'

Primula 'Rolt's'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   A fancy auricula with a red base and a wide, green edge. Limited quantity.
Primula 'Rosemary'

Primula 'Rosemary'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   Beautifully rounded petals of rich red flowers. The center of each flower is a pure white.
Primula 'Sandra'

Primula 'Sandra'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   A delight of rose-red that is paler at the edges of the petals, and with a creamy eye at the center.
Primula 'Sword'

Primula 'Sword'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   An unusual green-edged, double flower on a plant that grows vigorously.
Primula 'Tasket'

Primula 'Tasket'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Maedythe Martin is hybridizing many lovely auriculas which she shares with the world. Her creation shown here, is a striped flower named, 'Tasket.'
Primula 'Trudeau'

Primula 'Trudeau'

sorry, sold out
$9.95   This very vigorous plant has very large flowers of rich wine coloring. To emphasize again, it is a strong grower.
Primula 'Trudy'

Primula 'Trudy'

sorry, sold out
$11.95   Her petals are a rich dark red surrounding a clear white eye. Especially attractive are the leaves with their covering of silvery meal.
Primula 'Herb Dickson'

Primula marginata 'Herb Dickson'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Leaves that are gently toothed along the edges, with flowers that are a medium violet.
Primula 'Mauve Mist'

Primula marginata 'Mauve Mist'

sorry, sold out
$10.95   Clusters of plum-purple will bloom March into April on stems of 6 to 8 inches. Its attractive, evergreen leaves are deeply notched with soft teeth. For best growth, a site that is partly shaded.
Primula marginata 'White Linda Pope'

Primula marginata 'White Linda Pope'

sorry, sold out
$12.95   Toothed margins of the leaves define this species of primrose. Large white flowers bloom in late March to early May. The leaves are succulent and often dusted in a silvery-gray meal. The flowers of 'White Linda Pope' grow to about six inches tall. The leaves are lower, and grow slowly into a widening clump. It is evergreen and is decorative in leaf when not blooming.
 
 

Un-named Auricula Primroses

Here are several un-named auriculas. They are propagated by division.
 
Primula

Primula 7810

sorry, sold out
$8.95   Ragged-edged, striped flowers of reddish purple, green and cream.
Primula

Primula 8202

sorry, sold out
$8.95   Lavender petals blending into a wide creamy-yellow center.
Primula

Primula 8212

sorry, sold out
$8.95   Light lavender peatals blending into a creamy center.
Primula

Primula 8413

sorry, sold out
$8.95   Ruffled flowers with a light yellow center, and rose-violet petals.
Primula

Primula 8415

sorry, sold out
$8.95   Ruffled flowers with a yellow center, and rich, rose-violet petals.
Primula

Primula 8416

sorry, sold out
$8.95   Light to medium lavender petals blending into a creamy center, this time with a thrum flower type.
Primula

Primula 2005-4

sorry, sold out
$8.95   A ragged edge of dark reddish purple and green with creamy white in the center.
 
 

A few additional pimroses

 
Primula x bileckii

Primula x bileckii

sorry, sold out
$7.95   This is a very low miniature with a flower height of one to two inches. It is a natural hybrid of Primula minima and Primula rubra. The leaves are in tiny rosettes, and toothed. The flowers are large in proportion to the leaves, and are a pinkish-purple.
Primula 'Boothman's Variety'

Primula x pubescens 'Boothman's Variety'

sorry, sold out
$7.95   The flowers are 4 - 6 inches tall, a reddish-purle with a white eye, while the foliage reaches only to 4 inches. Blossoms in spring with a repeat in the fall.
Primula 'Charmer'

Primula 'Charmer'

sorry, sold out
$7.95   Pendant florets of light purple adorn the stems of 4 to 5 inches in spring. One of Herb Dickson's selections.
Primula 'Christine Kemp'

Primula 'Christine Kemp'

sorry, sold out
$7.95   The light pink flowers bloom just a few inches above the very low foliage.
Primula 'Darling'

Primula 'Darling'

sorry, sold out
$7.95   The rich maroon-purple flowers reach 6 inches high, while the foliage reaches four inches tall. Another of Herb Dickson's selections.
Primula 'Dekker'

Primula 'Dekker'

sorry, sold out
$7.95   The flowers are pink, 4 inches high, and can completely cover an older plant. Toothed leaves are small and low.
Primula 'Petite Princess'

Primula 'Petite Princess'

sorry, sold out
$7.95   The very low leaves are one to two inches high, while the wavy purplish-pink flowers are a couple of inches above the leaves.
 
 
pin and thrum flower types of primula

Different types of primrose flowers

On the left in the picture -- a diagram of a pin-eyed flower, cut from top to bottom (longitudinal cross section), and on the right -- a diagram of a thrum-eyed flower, cut from top to bottom.
   Insects visit the flowers in search of nectar, which is located at the bottom of the flower tube. This means that only long-tongued insects can actually reach the nectar in the base.
   An insect such as a Brimstone butterfly (Gonepteryx rhamni), visiting a pin-eyed flower, gets pollen stuck to the middle of its proboscis from the anthers half-way down the flower tube. If it then goes to visit a thrum-eyed flower, the pollen is perfectly positioned to be wiped off on the stigma, in this case, halfway down the flower tube.
   The reverse is also true. If the butterfly first visits a thrum-eyed flower, pollen is wiped off onto the top of its proboscis as it searches for nectar. This is then ideally placed to be transferred onto the stigma of the next pin-eyed flower which it visits. Diagram and information are courtesy of countrysideinfo.co.uk.
 

Our thoughts on growing Primula pubescens and Primula marginata

   Auricula primroses can be a challenge for anyone to grow. One reason is that they don't like hot, humid summer weather, since they're originally from the mountainous regions in Europe where the summer temperatures cool off a lot at night.

   The soil we use for growing our auricula primroses, is the same soil that we use for all of the other plants that we grow. It's a good quality of potting soil from the company, Sunshine/Sun Gro. The soil that we use is important, however we believe that how the plants are watered is even more important. Although the primroses can be grown either in the ground or in pots, one big advantage to growing them in pots is that you can more easily control how wet or dry their soil is. In our experience, they withstand being too dry better than they do to being kept too wet. If they don't dry out somewhat between waterings, the roots may start to rot.

   During a hot summer day, their leaves may wilt, even when their soil is moist. If you think you need to water the plant because you see the wilted leaves, you should check the soil first before watering the plant. If the soil is moist, the leaves are wilting just because of how hot it is and not because the roots are dry. If you water the plant anyhow, and the soil never has a chance to dry out, the roots may start to rot.

   Information on growing auriculas often mentions adding grit to their soil to encourage the soil to drain quickly and dry out faster. We don't do that, instead using the same commercial potting soil that we grow all of our other plants in. But we are very careful when we water the primroses. If we're in any doubt about whether a plant should be watered or not, we may wait a day, or as an alternative, just mist the leaves instead of watering the soil.

   Another thing that might help is using unglazed, porous, clay pots instead of plastic pots. They can also help to encourage the soil to dry out.

   Some auriculas are vigorous growers, and will grow well when planted in the ground in your garden. However, some are less vigorous so it may be best to start with keeping them in pots, and only later on, after you see how they do for you, moving them into the garden. In other words, doing a bit of cautious experimentation.

Dividing an older plant in pictures

Primula propagating 1

a multi-stemmed plant

   This primrose has been in this clay pot for several years, as you can tell by the moss on the soil. It could be left as it is, without dividing, possibly for another two or three years. However, at some point the plant will benefit from being divided and given fresh soil
Primula propagating 2

loosen the soil

   Here is the same plant as it looks removed from its pot. The roots are crowded but healthy, so it might be left as it is for awhile longer. For the sake of this demonstration, we will divide it.

   Early spring is the time of year when we divide our primroses.
Primula propagating 3

gently separate the stems

Here the plant is divided into stems that have both roots and leaves. The smallest pieces will need special care since they don't have much in the way of roots. It might be better to leave the smallest pieces attached to the larger stems, rather than separating them.
Primula propagating 4

remove the oldest leaves

   Here are the same pieces with their lower, older leaves removed, as well as their flowers. Doing this will allow more light and air to reach the center of the newly divided stems, which the plants like. The leaves are removed one at a time, by gently pulling them away from the stems, not by cutting them off.
Primula propagating 5

repot into fresh soil

   The final step is repotting the divisions into pots with fresh soil. The soil is a good quality commercial potting mix, and not one that is custom-made for the primroses. If the stems are especially long, they can be set lower into the soil because new roots will typically grow from the stems when they are buried.
Primula propagating 6