March 2008 – Primrose – Primula vulgaris
Primroses in Ryde Cemetery
The Primrose (Primula vulgaris) is native to Britain and Europe. Primroses are low-growing, clump-forming plants with single five-petalled flowers that range in colour from pale through to rich creamy yellow with a darker yellow eye. The flowers grow on hairy stems rising from rosettes of very wrinkled oval leaves. The primrose is one the first plants to come into bloom after winter and the name comes from ‘prima rosa’ meaning ‘ first rose’. Flowers can appear as early as January in some mild, sheltered locations. The primrose provides an important early nectar source for bees and is particularly attractive to bee flies. Primroses tolerate most soil types which do not dry out. At this time of the year parts of Ryde Cemetery are carpeted with primroses and look very beautiful.
Picking of primroses or the removal of primrose plants from the wild is now illegal in the UK.
Related Website: Natural England – page about Primroses
Website URL: http://www.plantpress.com/wildlife/o730-primrose.php