Primula graminifolia



Habitat: cool, moist places, part shade


Soil: humus-rich, moist but not waterlogged


Height: 15 cm


Flowering: late spring and early summer


Width: 10 cm



The Crystallophlomis section (often referred to as Nivalid primulas) consists of plants with long, more or less narrow leaves, generally upright, usually with white or pale yellow farina underneath. Each plant may have several flower stems, with one, two or three whorls of flowers, pink, purple, white or cream. In winter they form robust resting buds at ground level, and in the wild these would be covered with snow for a long time. The long, occasionally hot summers and too-warm winters make some of these plants difficult to grow in Britain, but others are long-lived, good garden plants. This section has a subsection Maximowiczii, which we list as a separate group of plants.

Primula graminifolia is one of several small species with narrow, strap-like leaves (the name means grassy leaves). It has a whorl with few pale purply-pink flowers with a white eye.
9 cm pot £4.00

Primula Crystallophlomis section (nivales) - some other suggestions
primula_brevicula.jpg Primula brevicula is related to the well-known Primula chionantha subsp. sinopurpurea, but is smaller, with narrow leaves. It can make a good clump quite quickly, and it can equally well disappear without warning. It should be kept cool, and not too wet in winter, and probably splitting the clumps would prevent loss.
primula_chionantha.jpg Primula chionantha is a robust plant 60 cm or more tall, with several whorls of white or purple flowers.
primula_chionantha.jpg Primula chionantha subsp. chionantha is a robust plant 60 cm or more tall, with several whorls of white flowers.
primula_chionantha3.jpg Primula chionantha subsp. sinopurpurea has one or two (occasionally three) whorls of lovely bright purple flowers, with a pale eye. It is one of the easiest to grow in this section, and we have had plants that have grown and flowered for many years in our garden. The clump of leaves are attractive in their own right, covered with farina, and holding fairly upright, making a cone through which the flower stems arise.
invisible.gif Primula crystallophlomis sect. has long, narrow leaves, which may identify it as sub-species sinoplantaginea, but the taxonomy of these plants is not well defined. It has one or two whorls of flowers, light purple.
invisible.gif Primula longipes comes from eastern Turkey, where it grows along streams, usually where it is very wet. It has long leaves, with meal on the underside, and one or two whorls of scented, pink-purple flowers with a clear white eye.
primula_minor.jpg Primula minor is a species that is rarely seen in cultivation, but it is a beautiful, vigorous, small member of the section. It has very narrow (just 6 mm wide) leaves, and short stems with a whorl of wide-open, pink flowers. Each plant rapidly becomes a thicket (up to 20 crowns in 18 months from seed). Flowering is over an extremely long period; some years we have not been without flowers from mid March to at least the end of July.
primula_orbicularis_ssse.jpg Primula orbicularis is a beautiful relative of Primula chionantha, with soft, yellow flowers, deeper yellow towards the centre, in a single umbel. Recently reintroduced to cultivation, it has been grown and flowered well, but we find that it does not persist in sites where Primula chionantha flourishes. Perhaps it needs more moisture.