H. Perennial & Old Fashioned Garden Plants & Flowers by John Wood
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Primula Cashmerianum - Hardy Perennial
Author: John Wood
Primula Cashmerianum Described.
Primula Cashmerianum - Cashmere Primrose; Nat Ord. Primulaceæ.
This belongs to the large-leaved and herbaceous section, and though it comes (as its name specifies) from a much warmer climate than ours, its habitat was found at a great altitude, and it has been proved to be perfectly hardy in North Britain. This species is comparatively new to English gardens, but it has already obtained great favour and is much grown. No collection of Primulæ can well be without it; its boldness, even in its young state, is the first characteristic to draw attention, for with the leaf development there goes on that of the scape. For a time the foliage has the form of young cos lettuce, but the under sides are beautifully covered with a meal resembling gold dust. This feature of the plant is best seen at the early stage of its growth, as later on the leaves bend or flatten to the ground in rosette form, the rosettes being often more than 12in. across. The golden farina varies in both quantity and depth of colour on different plants.
The flower scape is from 9in. to 12in. high, nearly as stout as a clay pipe stem, and very mealy, thickening near the top. The flowers, which are small, of a light purple colour, and having a yellow eye, are densely arranged in globular trusses, each lasting more than a fortnight in beauty. The leaves when resting on the ground show their finely serrated edges and pleasing pale green, which contrasts oddly with the under sides of those still erect, the latter being not only of a golden colour, as already mentioned, but their edges are turned, almost rolled under.
This plant loves moisture; and it will adorn any position where it can be well grown; it will also endure any amount of sunshine if it has plenty of moisture at the roots, and almost any kind of soil will do except clay, but peat and sand are best for it, according to my experience. During winter the crown is liable to rot, from the amount of moisture which lodges therein somewhat below the ground level; latterly I have placed a piece of glass over them, and I do not remember to have lost one so treated. Offsets are but sparingly produced by this species; propagation is more easily carried out by seed, from which plants will sometimes flower the first year.
Flowering period, March to May.
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