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Alpine RockeryHerbaceous Perennial

Primula vulgaris subsp. sibthorpii (Pr/Prim)
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  • RHS Plants for pollinators

Sibthorp primrose

P. vulgaris subsp. sibthorpii is a semi-evergreen perennial to to 15cm tall, with a rosette of obovate leaves and clusters of long-stalked purplish-pink flowers 2-3cm wide in early spring

Synonyms
Primula sibthorpii
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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0–0.1 metre
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Poorly–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Pink Green
Summer Green
Autumn Green
Winter Green
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

South–facing or North–facing or West–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Primulaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Genus

Primula are herbaceous or semi-evergreen perennials, forming a basal rosette of simple leaves, with salver-shaped or bell-shaped flowers which may be solitary or carried in an umbel or in whorls on an erect stem

Name status

Correct

Horticultural Group
Primrose group primulas are mainly grown as herbaceous perennials, and produce clusters of flowers on individual stems from the basal rosettes, although a few may also have umbel-like flowers. They are either spring-flowering, if grown without protection, or winter- to spring-flowering, if grown as biennial container plants in greenhouses or indoors.
Plant range
E. Balkan Peninsula

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How to grow

Cultivation

Best planted in dappled shade in humus-rich, moist neutral to acid soil. Tolerates full sun if soil remains moist at all times

Propagation

Propagate by seed; take root cuttings when dormant in winter. Divide between autumn and early spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Coastal
  • Rock garden
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Gravel garden
  • Patio and container plants
  • Flower borders and beds
  • Garden edging
Pruning

No pruning required

Pests

Susceptible to leafhoppers, vine weevil, slugs and snails, caterpillars and aphids

Diseases

May be affected by primula brown core, grey mould, primula leaf spot and a virus

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