Candelabra Primulas.

I have just purchased a packet of Candelabra primula seed has any members any tips on successful germination techniques.

Yours sincerely Mr W J R


  • weejennyweejenny Posts: 391

    Ive not been successful with germination. I love them as a plant they are in my top ten. What I decided to do this year as I wanted more colours was to buy a collection of 12 mixed plants, they do self seed freely so when they do I was going to llift the seedlngs to bring them on.

  • yarrow2yarrow2 Posts: 701

    Greenshoot and weejenny:  did you see the Gardener's World 27th April programme? They visited RHS Harrow  primula specialist and the chap gave details on how they germinate.   The programme is maybe still on the website.  Was interesting and made me want to try this as well.

  • RobotRobot Posts: 137

    I bought some plants a couple of years ago and put them in the bog garden hoping they would spread around.  Next year zilch.  Not even the original plants.  C'est la vie...

  • gardeningfanticgardeningfantic Posts: 1,019

    i grew some from seed easily enough Autumn 2010..thou this is the first year they have flowered found them easy to grow myself.. just in tray with compost and covered keep moist and warm until showing.. about 15 days.. i think it was.. they grew very fast once going and root system soons get big and fat..



  • Germinate at 15 to 20 degrees in damp compost, higher temp may hinder germination, cover seed very lightly with vermiculite, place in a propagator in shady position, keep moist but not wet, germination can take up to 30 days. Once the tiny seedlings emerge sprinkle a bit more vermiculite.  I had to do this twice but eventually got seven plants from a packet of seeds, they flowered the following year (now) and look lovely. this advice was given to me by the seed seller.

  • I found it impossible to get any germination from dried seed.  But Carol Klein said in a previous series of GW, if I recall correctly, that the primula family of plants is the exception to the rule about ripened seed, and showed how to propogate by sowing fresh seed.  I intend to try this with my plants (bought as mature plants) as they stop flowering.

  • @yarrow2:  thanks for the reminder about the Harlow Carr way of getting them to germinate.  I've just watched it again.  The chap said it could be done either in the autumn or the spring, although they favoured the spring sowing so they could identify each plant's colour.  Nothing about planting the under-ripe seed, though.  Perhaps I confused the other advice with ordinary primulas. 

  • backyardeebackyardee Posts: 132

    No confusion re fresh seed. You can sow them in the green, that is to say collect whilst green and before they have dried.  If you have sown any bought seed, do not discard the tray/pot, Leave in a cool shady place out of the rain. keep moist, not wet. Leave over the winter, by the following mid spring you may have a few pop up.

  • Thankyou backyardee - very useful info.  I'll try "in the green" and also try to be patient! 

  • weejennyweejenny Posts: 391

    Well my 12 mixed!!! plug plants were a waste of time they were all yellow, so disappointing. Ive spotted a lovely red one in a neighbours garden called Inverewe I'm going to ask for seeds to try the in the green tip

  • Pennine PetalPennine Petal Posts: 1,541
    Went to Harlow Carr today, candelabra primulas were looking stunning, particularly the mixed colours, primula viali too.
  • gardeningfanticgardeningfantic Posts: 1,019

    i have managed to get mine to germinate.. i treated them just like i did my cowslips and primrose seeds.. keep moist in the greenhouse out of 50 seeds i had 42 come up.. doing smae again now with them.. and they were dried seeds.. will let you know how this lot do..

  • weejennyweejenny Posts: 391

    Ive now ordered 5 more plants from ebay they should arrive this week.Im determined to have some mixed colours!! I'll put half of the yellow ones about the garden.

    Penninepetal wrote (see)
    Went to Harlow Carr today, candelabra primulas were looking stunning, particularly the mixed colours, primula viali too.

     Primula Viali doesnt survive with me is it not so hardy?

  • Pennine PetalPennine Petal Posts: 1,541
    No problems in Lancashire, we're at about 1000ft, usually get snow. I have to keep an eye out for slugs though, they eat right through the stems.
  • weejennyweejenny Posts: 391

    I think Im going to have to start on slug pellets earlier someone suggested Valentines day. If no snow next year I will and I'll try Viali for the third time. thanks Penninepetal

  • I saw the display at harlow carr blew my mind !!!! got one and had it in the garden for a year, dug it up for winter in the garage just left it in a bucket, in spring moved from west yorks to east coast took it with me its mid may now and its got 8 flower buds looking good......

    I went to a garden centre and found in the regected plants, 6 pots of about 9 plants for  £2 per pot got the lot !!!!! split two pots into 9 plants and repotted the the  remaining  clumps without splitting (I saw somwere that thay do better in clumps ,we shall see)

    everythings looking good ,,,,,,,,,,,lets see

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