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Saturday, February 9, 2013

Sneak Peek at Spring Blooming Primrose (Cowslip)

Yellow Flowering Primula Veris
I couldn't resist going into the archives to pull out this photo of my Primula Veris or otherwise known as the herbal Cowslip.  I took it last spring but never used the photos for anything.  

I planted this primula some years ago...it was from a gardening friend who was in his upper 70's  and who could garden circles around me.  His energy was incredible and his gardens extensive.  A former English teacher, he bought interesting plants and bulbs from all over the world and this was one of many plants he passed on to me.  

I really didn't know much about it except that it was a primrose, and not the ones you commonly find in the stores.  So, I did a bit of research to learn more about this beautiful hardy perennial with its sunshine-y petals.

It is thought that the name "cowslip" comes from when it was found blooming in the meadows where cows were pastured. It is a low-growing plant with a rosette of leaves that produces a stalks of 10-30 flowers on a single stem.  It is a parent of the modern primrose and blooms from April to May.  It's also a favorite food of rabbits and I'm thankful my one specimen has survived the many rabbits in our little bit of suburbia. 

Some of its herbal uses are for insomnia and anxiety in tincture form.  The petals are thought to have a calming effect and promote sweating in the case of fevers. Ointments with the petals are used for sunburns and skin blemishes.

Common Name: Cowslip
I've not used mine medicinally as I have other plants that I can use that are more plentiful for the same things.  I just like how dependably beautiful this plant is year from year.  I have it planted in an east location in part shade where it does well.  It doesn't like hot summers though, so I try to water it occasionally when I see it wilting.  

If you don't have one of these beauties in your perennial border, you may want to check them out, they're are worth having and they won't disappoint.

Besides, why should cows be the only ones to enjoy them?

What's your favorite primrose?



Herbal information resource for this article: http://www.herbalremedies.com/cowslip-information.html


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28 comments:

  1. I have heard of cowslip - but never seen any before. Beautiful, graceful, feminine flowers!

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  2. Hi Nancy! It's interesting about the name! Your plant in the picture is beautiful! So many blooms... incredible! And the picture is great too! I think our rabbits haven't discovered my primulas yet, but slugs are enjoying them year around. Thank you for the info and lovely images, and also, thank you for visiting my blog! Have a great weekend!

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    1. Thanks so much too...have a great day!

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  3. SO pretty, I've heard of 'Cowslip,' but never seen a photo before. I thought that it was a primrose (because of the leaves)... Thank you for sharing on Weekly Top Shot #69!

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    1. Thanks Madge...it is a primrose but this form I believe is a primula. From what I understand, the modern primrose is a variation of this original plant. :)

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  4. The beautiful sunny yellow of your thumbnail drew me to check out your blog.Beautiful flower.

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    1. Yellow is such a cheery color...especially in February where we live!

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  5. Why cows are the only ones to enjoy them?

    Because they have bigger eyes.

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    1. Ha ha! Could be... But somehow I think the cows would rather eat them than look at them!! :)

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  6. I love the bright, yellow color ... It's nice to know that the spring is just around the corner ~ with the loveliest flowers to blossom in the nature and in the gardens!

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    1. That's so true. Winter is a great contrast to spring...it makes us full of wonder - like little kids again!!

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  7. They look beautiful don't they. I don't know if I have a favourite.

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  8. They are so pretty and I really enjoy them every year. :)

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  9. Gorgeous! I wish I had a green thumb. My dream is to have a pretty flower garden some day, complete with a little fountain and a pretty cafe table where I could drink my coffee in the morning surrounded by the beautiful flowers! LOL

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    1. That sounds perfect to me! In our front little brick patio, I plant lots of pots of annuals by our little patio table...it's so nice and relaxing! Here's a post where I show them...hope yours happens one day soon, I would love to see it! :) http://livininthegreen.blogspot.com/2012/09/flower-photos-in-rain.html

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  10. I love primroses! Replant them by my pond they seem to like wet feet. I pick them up at a greenhouse that sells them cheaply in the spring. I prefer the blues, but I have yellows and pinks also.

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    1. That's good to know about the moisture...mine is pretty hardy because it's not the more modern primrose, but I'll have to remember to plant the newer ones in more shade and maybe on our northside. :)

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  11. I have one of these with some pink in it. I got it from my dad who got it from my grandma. Rumor is she brought it over from Germany. It is nice to have something that has such a story.

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    1. That must be awesome! It's wild how plants can really carry a legacy with them. Hope you're able to pass more plants on to others!! :)

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  12. These are so lovely, and it's awesome that yours has come back for years! I worked at a greenhouse for many years and winter/spring primulas were some of my favorites (some of the yellow ones even have a very delicate scent to them which is lovely!)

    Thanks so much for sharing this on Waste Not Want Not Wednesday!

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    1. Thanks for hosting and visiting too!

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  13. So informative, I had no idea that the beautiful spring Cowslip was good for skin blemishes, that's new to me:-) Thank you so much for sharing! Rebecca@ Natural Mothers Network x

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    1. Thanks for your kind comments Rebecca...have a great day!

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  14. Beautiful yellow and thanks for sharing the health benefits! Thanks for sharing on Tuesday Greens!

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