Belarina Double Primroses
These new Belarina Double Primroses are phenomenal!
As I wander through the garden, I know that spring is around the corner when I see one of my favourite plants coming into flower…. the humble Primrose.
Primroses – there is always that beautiful spring image that comes to my mind when Primroses are mentioned, carpets of pale yellow that joyfully signify spring is on its way. They delightfully flower for weeks upon weeks and self-seed, requiring no fuss whatsoever. Often peeping through brambles and grass in hedgerows, could any other Primrose really compare?
When I first came across double Primroses I was mesmerised…such beautiful flowers, not too brash as a lot of double flowers can be, just so pretty. I was however quite disappointed, the plants were often weak and difficult, almost always not performing in the garden and certainly not liking the rain. On the whole not good as garden varieties.
Then along came the Belarinas!!!! Just another double range I said to myself – how wrong could I be. A few poor ones left at the end of the selling season were unceremoniously dumped into a corner of the garden and the next year I was shocked…. they were stunning. Large clumps, full of flower in the most sumptuous colours. Everything that our Welsh winters had thrown at them had been shrugged off and they were the star of this shady corner.
So, I am now an absolute Belarina convert. Last year we planted them en masse in our woodland. They have been flowering now for several months and will continue throughout the mild spells in the winter, coming into their own in the spring.
For containers these wonderful plants they are just as good. Here I am admiring a pot full that’s been left in the garden, ignored, yet reliably providing masses of flowers year after year.
So as the winter months draw in, we as gardeners crave those summer months with the cheer that has now passed. Winter can be just as satisfying though, especially as spring rears its promising head. The new shoots of life on those crisp sunny mornings can be just as magical. To help, the Belarina double Primroses provide us with a fantastic decadent floral display with glossy evergreen leaves and bright flowers. When I say floral display, I mean that they flower insanely, as good as a rose in some ways yet in a different season, helping to spread that colour period.
Something that blows me away with these gorgeous plants is that the word “double”. This almost doesn’t do them justice with their multitude of ruffled petals in each flower. If kept dead headed and well maintained, they will keep flowering and provide you with a wonderful display for most of the season.
Here at the nursery we have the following varieties and each one has its own wonderful virtues.
Belarina Cream is a lovely, classy variety which blends beautifully with winter plants such as Pieris and those dramatic red and orange stemmed Cornus. I like these mixed with snowdrops in the spring too for a splash of serenity.
Belarina Violetta is one I absolutely love as Matt and Gems daughter share the same name!!! This variety is a deep violet purple with beautiful delicate white edges, it almost looks as if it has been kissed by the first frost with flecks of white around the edge that look like tiny flakes of ice delicately kissing the petals.
Belarina Valentine is a gorgeous deep blood red – that of a Valentines rose. It is especially striking, a wonderful companion for many of the winter border bedding, especially the likes of the hardy Cyclamen in their reds, pinks and whites. The red of this is so sumptuous and deep its’s like that of the old Ena Harkness rose, absolutely gorgeous and has the faintest scent too.
Belarina Nectarine – these remind me of those sweets the ‘Fruit Salads’ and definitely give that summer vibe that nectarines and fruity sweets do!! Definitely a variety that is needed in those dull rainy days. This variety is a peachy, orange yellow! The colours all blend together, they almost look like the sky as the sunset is just ending on a long summers night.
Belarina Buttercup Yellow – I love how this variety has been named as it reminds me of sunny spring/ early summer days. The colour is vibrant and cheerful and screams sunshine. Definitely a plant you need if you are feeling a bit blue with winter approaching!! It promises cheer having the same lovely yellow as those wild primroses but with multi layers of petals.
These double Primroses really are a must have plant. Their whorls of gorgeous glossy green leaves produce masses of flowers which, if dead headed, will go on for months. They’ve also been known to flower sporadically during the summer too!! They are hardy but are not keen on being oversaturated so prefer a well-drained border that is out of the beating summer sun and holds a bit of moisture. Other than that, they are fairly fuss free. A good tip is to plant them under deciduous shrubs. As the season progresses the leaves of the shrubs will protect them from the worst of the summer sun.
Something I absolutely adore about Primulas is how they multiply, dividing to form new plants relentlessly. Their offsets easy to pull off to give free plants galore. This is a really nice job for encouraging children, little hands that enjoy gardening. It is so rewarding both for kids and adults. Division is best done either in the late summer / early autumn or after flowering.
Isn’t it amazing how little things affect your whole life? I can always remember going to the local nursery with my Grandma (who you may have realised by now had a massive influence on my early gardening love) and the owner gave me some Primroses. I was so blown away with his generosity and this single act of kindness changed my life. I was hooked.
So, to summaries, these new varieties are excellent garden and container plants, needing little in the way of care and providing months of beauty during the winter and spring months. Happy gardening.