Monday, June 25, 2018

19 Aug

What’s the Difference Between Polyanthus, Primroses and Pansies?

When buying your autumn bedding plants, it can often become confusing when faced with choosing between Polyanthus, Primrose and Pansy plants. Here you will find an outline of each plant description and their differences…


The Pansy will forever be linked to it’s ancestor, the Viola. Viola is a large genus, with over 500 species. They are known as an all-season plant, and are brilliant as bedding plants because they are generally pest and disease free.

Pansy flowers have one of three basic colour patterns. Blooms can be single with one clear colour. A second pattern is a single colour with black lines radiating from its center. These lines are called penciling and are similar to viola markings. The last type of flower is probably the one of the most familiar. The bloom of this type has a dark center called a “face”.


Polyanthus is a common name for flowers part of the primula genus. They are known for being similar to Primroses, but unlike Primroses the flowers stand proud of the leaves of the plant. They are named Primula from the Latin primus meaning first, because they are the first flowers to appear in Spring. Polyanthus plants are known to be a natural hybrid between the cowslip (Primula veris) and the common primrose (Primula vulgaris).

Polyanthus flowers come in a wide range of colours and shades. They are often admired for their bright multi coloured petals and ability to brighten up any garden.


Primroses, like Polyanthus come from the Primula genus. They are often confused, but a few things separate Primroses to Polyanthus. Primroses, like Polyanthus are closely related to the cowslip, but are also known to be linked to the oxlip too. Primroses are actually two different types of flowers which look superficially almost identical. One type is called ‘pin-eyed’ (female) and the other, ‘thrum-eyed’ (male). The two different types of flowers are produced on separate plants.

Primroses originally were known for their creamy yellow colouring, but now come in a fantastic range of colours. Take a look for some in your area, you can still find naturally growing primroses on sunny banks and in deep woodland.


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