Primula 'Wanda'

Common Name: pruhonicensis hybrid primula 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Primulaceae
Zone: 3 to 9
Height: 0.25 to 0.50 feet
Spread: 0.25 to 0.50 feet
Bloom Time: April
Bloom Description: Red-purple
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy
Attracts: Butterflies
Tolerate: Heavy Shade


Best grown in organically rich, consistently moist, well-drained soils in part shade to full shade. Although plants will tolerate full sun in cool summer climates, they require shady conditions with uniformly moist soils in the St. Louis area. Soils must never be allowed to dry out. Plants are generally intolerant of the summer heat and humidity of the deep South. Plants appreciate a spring-summer mulch that will help maintain soil moisture and keep roots cool. Plant foliage may depreciate considerably in the heat of the summer. Propagate by division in spring after bloom. Plants spread slowly by creeping rhizomes to form small clumps.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Primula is a genus of about 450 species. Most are herbaceous perennials but some but some have woody bases or are evergreen. They are widely distributed in the Northern hemisphere with some also occurring in the Southern hemisphere. They are grown for their lovely flowers. Most prefer climates with cool summers.

The genus name Primula means "little earliest one" and is the feminine diminutive of the Latin primus.

‘Wanda’ is an early-blooming Juliana (Pruhonicensis) hybrid primrose that features circular, 5-lobed, intense red to purple flowers with yellow eyes. Flowers appear in clusters (umbels) on 3-4” tall stems rising up in April from a basal rosette of bright green leaves. The Kemper Center has planted several other Wanda group hybrids, including P. ‘Wanda Elaine’ (B686), P. ‘Wanda Kay’ (B687) and P. ‘Wanda Renae’s Pearl’ (B688). Primula comes from the latin word primus meaning first in reference to early bloom time.


Slugs, snails, aphids and red spider mites are sometimes seen. Botrytis, root rot, rust and leaf spots may occur.


Brightly attractive harbinger of spring that grows well in shady locations including border fronts, rock gardens, and shade or woodland gardens. May be an effective edger.

Also may be grown in pots.