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I have one variety of primrose happily established. This I have divided many times. But often I have bought others in the spring and those have not lived. I donít know what the difference is. I planted them near the older primroses since they were happy there. I wonder if some varieties are hardier than others. They all look the same apart from flower color.
I don't know much about different varieties, but I have a clump of pretty yellow primroses which have thrived in hot, humid north AL for several years. The secret? They're growing next to the drainage hose from our air conditioner under some butterfly bushes outside our bedroom window. The bushes are cut back in spring, giving a clear view of the primroses, then bush out in summer providing shade for them -- and hiding the leaves in case you don't like them. Personally, I don't have anything against lettuce leaves. ;-)
I just don't know. How's that for honesty? It's possible that the newer ones you've bought are more recent hybrids and that they just don't perform the same as an older one. You could try your question at the Beginner Flowers forum.
Thanks for your tips. That A/C hose is another type of microclimate I hadn't thought of. How clever, that the hotter it is, your primrose is automatically getting more water. And a good way to accommodate early spring bloomers under something that's bigger later.
linnea- I came across a clipping my mother gave me from the local paper, which was partly why I decided to write this article-Anyway, the clipping shows Primula vulgaris, and looks very similar to Primula polyanthus.Maybe the one that's doing well for you IS another species, which still looks very similar in flower. That could be enough to make a difference. Good luck! If you take a good picture of yours to a locally owned nursery they might be able to confirm. ( I doubt that a large chain store nursery person will be a reliable source for this kind of question.)