New Video: Plant Primroses for Bees

Have you seen our new video?  We hope you like it.  If you do, please share widely, plant your own Primroses, and help inspire fellow Fairy Gardeners to do the same!

‘Fairy Gardening Part 1’ was made entirely by volunteers from the Fairyland Trust.  It was shot, produced and directed by student film-makers whose families have been part of the Fairyland Trust crew for many years, and acted by members of the crew.

Why Primroses Now?

Primrose time is upon us, and hungry Queen Bees will soon be emerging from their winter shelters, and urgently need to find pollen and nectar.  Primroses provide an ideal early food source for bumblebees, and hugely brighten up your garden.  They also take well and are easy to plant.

Primroses are spring flowers which tolerate most soils, and like a partly shaded position with some sun.  Be sure only to plant the wild native type of primrose, as multi-coloured garden centre ‘primula’ varieties may have little or no nourishment for bees and other wildlife.  We recommend buying your primroses as small ‘plug plants’ (with roots) from British Wild Flower Plants  by post. The people at this company are true experts in wildflower gardening and have generously supported our Fairy Gardening Workshops over many years, by donating a huge amount of wildflower plants.  Here’s the link to their Primrose page.

Matt and Linda at BWFP with some primroses and other spring flowers

Help Bring Back Our Primroses

Although everyone has probably heard of Primroses they are now much rarer than they used to be.  Chemical sprays and over-fertilisation of our verges and hedgerows with farm fertiliser and pollution from traffic has replaced many traditional Primrose banks  with rank growth of big grasses and Cow Parsley (more here).

A spring Primrose Bank – now a rare sight.  But you can bring them back to your garden.

One of many ‘Primrose Corners’ (this is in Norfolk) which have lost their Primroses but not their name.  It doesn’t have to be like this!

As well as bees, Primroses attract night-flying moths who feed on the nectar and spread the pollen, helping the plants produce seeds.  If you plant a patch of Primroses you’ll be helping lots of wildlife, and they can soon spread to create a good clump.

These Primroses multiplied in a Fairy Garden corner only a few years after planting as ‘plug plants’.

A Primrose blooming in a pot after being brought home from a Fairyland Trust Fairy Gardens Workshop (read more about it here).

The most practical thing many of us can do to help wildlife is to welcome wildflowers back into our own gardens.  

Please help us spread the word about Fairy Gardening (and follow us on Facebook and Twitter), and become a Supporter of the Fairyland Trust.  We have ideas for three more Fairy Gardening videos, and the more support we have, the more we can do.

And Finally

… here are some additional traditional names for Primroses:

Caithness: Buckie-Faalie

Devon: Butter Rose, Lent Rose

Somerset: Darling of April, Early Rose, Easter Rose, First Rose, Golden Rose, Golden Stars

Shetland: May Flooer

Scotland: May Spink

Yorkshire: Simmerin

Ireland: Sambaircin

 

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