Primula bulleyana

candelabra primula

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Outstanding Qualities

Candelabra primroses demand attention in shade gardens because of their fragrant, erect, multi-tiered noble blooms. In late spring, Primula bulleyanas dazzling rich orange blooms are borne in tiered flower whorls, 5 to7 per stalk. Its foliage is mid-green, lanced shaped, semi-evergreen with toothed margins to 12 inches. Primula bulleyana are very long-lived and need part shade, rich soil and regular watering. Growing 18 to 24 inches tall, they quickly establish to a good size by self-sowing and look particularly stunning when grown in mass. Primula bulleyana may be semi-deciduous in winter but will return with vigor each spring.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: spreading perennial

Foliage Type: deciduous

Plant Height: 2 ft. 0 in. (0.61 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 2 ft. 0 in. (0.61 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 8

Flower Color: orange

Sun/Light Exposure: light to open shade

Water Requirements: if the site is not wet or moist, water frequently

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: purple, pink

Great Color Partners: yellow, dark green, cream

Culture Notes
This candelabra primrose grows best in open to light shade and protected from hot afternoon sun. Grow in a rich moist to wet soil. This primrose can tolerate sand and clay if the site is moist. Once established it can naturalize, but it is best to start with three to five plants to insure proper pollination and good seed set. Faded flower stems can be removed once the seed has disbursed. In fall cut back any yellowing foliage to tidy up.
Geek Notes
Native to southern Sichuan and and northwest Yunnan Provinces, China growing along streams and in moist alpine meadows.