Proper Care for Primroses


Primroses (Primula) are adaptable, hardy flowers that first bloom in early spring and continue blooming through summer and sometimes even into autumn. As long as primroses are given the proper growing conditions, they aren't difficult to grow. They just need a semishady spot and adequate moisture to thrive. Widely available in a rainbow of vivid colors, primroses are inexpensive and are the perfect choice to complement tulips, hyacinths, daffodils and other early-blooming flowers.

Step 1

Choose a partially shaded spot for your primroses where the plants won't be exposed to hot afternoon sun. Avoid windy areas, which will dry the primroses.

Step 2

Prepare the soil for primroses before planting. Cultivate the soil to at least 8 inches, and mix in 1 to 2 inches of compost or well-rotted manure, and then plant the primroses in the area.

Step 3

Water the primroses immediately after planting. Primroses should be watered once a week, especially during hot, dry periods.

Step 4

Spread an inch of organic mulch such as shredded bark or chopped leaves around the base of the primrose plant. Mulch keeps the soil cool and retains moisture.

Step 5

Feed primroses in early spring, using a fertilizer for blooming plants or a balanced, general-purpose fertilizer. Fertilize primroses again after the blooms fade.

Step 6

Divide primroses in early spring or fall. Dig up the entire clump of primroses, along with the roots, and divide them into smaller sections with your fingers. Be sure each section has a set of roots. Replant the primroses in soil that has been amended with compost or well-rotted manure.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost or aged manure
  • Organic mulch
  • Fertilizer for blooming plants or general-purpose fertilizer


  • University of Illinois Extension: Primroses
  • New York Botanical Garden: Primulas--From Pot to Garden
  • Gardening Know How: Growing Primrose---Primrose Plants In Your Garden
Keywords: primrose care, Primula garden, divide primroses

About this Author

M.H. Dyer is a long-time writer, editor and proofreader. She has been a contributor to the East-Oregonian Newspaper and See Jane Run magazine, and is author of a memoir, “The Tumbleweed Chronicles, a Sideways Look at Life." She holds an Master of Fine Arts from National University, San Diego.