Best of the bunch

Macclesfield Express - - LEISURE -

Prim­u­las THESE spring favourites in a va­ri­ety of forms and a rain­bow of colours have been deemed the Hor­ti­cul­tural Trades As­so­ci­a­tion’s (HTA) ‘Plant of the Mo­ment’ for March.

They flower their hearts out for weeks on end, both in con­tain­ers and in beds and borders, self-seed freely and come back year af­ter year.

New va­ri­eties are con­tin­u­ally be­ing bred, of­fer­ing out­stand­ing gar­den per­for­mance, larger flowers and bet­ter re­sis­tance to in­clement weather. Al­though sin­gle­coloured flowers are al­ways pop­u­lar, also look out for bi­colours, dou­ble and rose­bud types, plus won­der­fully scented new va­ri­eties.

Good choices in­clude the Ja­panese can­de­labra prim­ula (P. japon­ica) and orange Bul­ley’s can­de­labra prim­ula (P. bul­leyana).

There are many va­ri­eties – polyan­thus and prim­rose are from the same genus. They sur­vive best in par­tial shade and soil en­riched in hu­mus.

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