Sowing Himalayan Giant Primula

Last year on BBC Gardener’s World, Monty Don dug a pond in his garden. I was amazed at how he’d managed to plant the edges so successfully that when high summer arrived, you would be mistaken in believing this garden had been in situ for at least 2 or 3 years. He’d obviously chosen the plants very carefully to suit their habitat perfectly. One of these happened to be the Giant Himalayan Primula (or Primula florindae), a plant I’d never heard of before, but was really impressed by, it looked like a giant cowslip.


Since I don’t think I’d ever seen one in a garden centre, I ordered some seed. I think it would look lovely in my (newly named) bog garden! This is a woody area on the side of the main lawn. I have planted lots of spring bulbs and some native wildflowers like ox-eye daisy here.

Today I read up a little on the sowing technique for the primula, this one in particular needs a good spell of cold weather then warmth to trick it into germination. Since it’s so cold outside, I thought if I sow now and leave it out for a few weeks then bring it in to get going, it should work.


The seeds can be sown onto ordinary, slightly damp seed compost, but they should be sown thinly as they are tiny specimens. The instructions suggested not covering the seeds at all, but I wavered and put some fine grit on top.


It’s best to put the tray into a platic bag to conserve moisture, but don’t water until the cold treatment is completed. You could also put the seeds on a tray of compost in the fridge if you have room.


I set myself a little reminder to bring them back indoors in 3 weeks, then I’ll post on their progress!

More on Building a Pond

2 thoughts on “Sowing Himalayan Giant Primula

  1. Hi
    I sow my primula and leave outside and dont use a propagator at all. I think propagators arent always thebest thing for some seeds, some seeds dont like a lot of heat.

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