Primula vialii (or P viallii depending on your choice of spelling) is one of the loveliest of flowers. Not a traditional primula by any means, it is also known as Turk’s Turban, Vial’s Primrose, Orchid Primrose, Red Hot Poker Primrose, Chinese Pagoda Primrose and probably a dozen other names besides, and all very descriptive. The starry lilac flowers open up from tight red buds, and gradually the flowering head lengthens to accommodate more flowers.
I love this primula and am lucky enough to be able to grow it in my garden, though it has – up to now – proven to be relatively short-lived for a member of this family. So it is definitely a case of ‘making the most of it’.
This is the pink tinged flower cluster from one of my elder trees (elderberry), Sambucus nigra ‘Guincho Purple’. The leaves of the tree are a dark purple/green when planted in good light which is reflected in the pinky flowers, whereas the native elder has creamy white flower clusters.