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Author Topic: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’  (Read 11000 times)

Lampwick

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Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« on: May 12, 2008, 03:07:44 PM »
Primula  x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’

This is now at the end of its flowering period, and the leaves are putting on vigorous growth now.
The clumps need splitting and dividing and I usually do this soon after flowering, but some authorities suggest doing this in the autumn. What is the preferred season that some of you folk prefer; and why?
P. x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’ was just one of many ‘Garryarde’ hybrids that were breed in Ireland in the 1950s, but many of these are said to be no longer in cultivation.

Can anyone please confirm if any of the following are still available?
P. x ‘Garryarde Crimson’
P. x ‘Garryarde Enid’
P. x ‘Garryarde Galahad’
P. x ‘Garryarde The Grail’
P. x ‘Garryarde Vctory’

I bought ‘The Grail’ very many years ago (not in flower), but it turned out to be indistinguishable from ‘Guinevere’ when it flowered; ‘The Grail’, I believe, should have deep purple-red flowers.  :o
~~Lampwick~~
Staffordshire, United Kingdom. (name: John R. Husbands)

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David Nicholson

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2008, 07:55:54 PM »
Yes Lampwick!!?, she's a lovely little lady isn't she.

I normally re-pot and take offsets from my Auriculas and pot grown Primulas after flowering has finished, but this year I shall leave my Auriculas until September. My reasoning is that I can continue watering them fairly liberally through the early/mid part of the Summer, before drying them off a little for re-potting and splitting as the days become a little cooler and hopefully coincide with some post Autumn growth. This way I hope to loose fewer plants and offsets in the hot spells. My Primulas have had possibly their best year this year and I am convinced it was because after re-potting them in mid-May I kept them in the greenhouse rather than consigning them to my Auricula over-summering shelves-of course the lousy Summer last year may have had something to do with it. At least they had daily care where I could get at them easily.

Peter Ward, author of the RHS Wisley Handbook on Primroses and Auriculas, who grew lots of the old Primrose and Polyanthus varieties in pots and in the garden, always used to split his plants in early Autumn as the days became cooler.

As far as the old Garryarde varieties are concerned they are a bit like hen's teeth and I don't know of a supplier. I remain convinced though that in some quiet corner in Ireland there exists an old gardener with a whole host of them. The problem is, where is he? Maybe Paddy or Micheal Campbell have more information.
David Nicholson
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Lesley Cox

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2008, 08:52:06 PM »
'Grail' was available here in NZ a couple of years ago but even that seems to have vanished now. Not sure that we had the others in the first place, except 'Guinivere' of course. Thanks goodness it is still around - but sparsely. :'(
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

arisaema

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2008, 09:22:13 AM »
If that's 'Garryarde Guinevere', then what could this be? :-\ It's much paler, nearly white, with relatively small flowers.




shelagh

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2008, 09:30:08 AM »
Ever the optimist David 'hot spells'  ::) our forecast is for wall to wall rain over the weekend.
Shelagh, Bury, Lancs.

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David Nicholson

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #5 on: July 04, 2008, 10:01:59 AM »
arisaema, well, there's a problem given the number of Primula hybrids out there! My guess, based on the lack of reddish tints in the leaves of your plant indicating some P. juliae in the mix, is that your plant is a Primula vulgaris hybrid similar to http://www.greekmountainflora.info/Taygetos/slides/Primula%20vulgaris.html  BUT, other Primula growers with far more experience than I might disagree.

Shelagh, my optimism was back in early May, it's evaporated now!
David Nicholson
in Devon, UK  Zone 9b
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WimB

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #6 on: July 04, 2008, 10:49:26 AM »
It would seem Edrom nurseries still has Primula  x 'Garryarde crimson'
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arisaema

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2008, 11:50:22 AM »
David;

The foliage is bronzed, or at least quite dark, but it could very well be a vulgaris hybrid or seedling, or maybe even one of the other 'Garryarde's. I bought this clone as 'Garryarde Guinevere' in Denmark, it seems fairly widespread there, Kalle K. and the Poulsens both have pictures that show the foliage much better than mine.

Paul T

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #8 on: July 04, 2008, 12:30:02 PM »
I have a Primula bought as 'Garryard's Variety', which is a hose in hose style white.  Does that fit one of the named forms, and if so which name?  Does well for me here.
Cheers.

Paul T.
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Min winter temp -8 or -9°C. Max summer temp 40°C. Thankfully, maybe once or twice a year only.

David Nicholson

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2008, 01:53:55 PM »
If the leaves are a red/bronze shade then it is possible that the plant is either one of the 'Garrayarde' group, or possibly a hybrid with some Primula juliae blood in it. I just looked up what Peter Ward, in the RHS Wisley Handbook 'Primroses and Auriculas' had to say about 'Garryardes' and quote as follows:-

'As well as being the home of a number of P. juliae hybrids, Ireland is also the origin of the interesting 'Garryarde' primroses, which were mostly of mixed primrose/polyanthus habit. They are descended from a sport of the wild primrose that arose in the garden of Mr Whiteside-Dane in County Kildare around 1900. Named 'Apple Blossom', this plant was distinguished by its bronze coloured leaves, a feature that it bequeathed to all of its offspring, most of which also had pink and white flowers, although bronze-leaved plants with red flowers, and also white, were later introduced. 'Apple Blossom' is considered to have been either a mutation of P. vulgaris or a hybrid with a red primrose. One of the earliest and most famous of its offspring is 'Guinevere' (syn. 'Garryarde Guinevere'), a plant that, through micropropagation, is commonly available today. Few, if any, of the other Garryardes survive, although 'Enchantress', one of the best, may still grow ina few gardens.'

Not sure if this helps, or hinders, but it does show what a crazy mixed up bunch these plants are!   
David Nicholson
in Devon, UK  Zone 9b
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arisaema

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #10 on: July 04, 2008, 05:14:08 PM »
Thanks David, very interesting to read the story behind these dark-leaved cultivars! To complicate things further Jelitto offers a bronze-leaved seed strain called 'Jessica', although the results were somewhat dissapointing, the majority were plain green.

David Nicholson

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #11 on: July 04, 2008, 06:19:15 PM »
David Nicholson
in Devon, UK  Zone 9b
"Victims of satire who are overly defensive, who cry "foul" or just winge to high heaven, might take pause and consider what exactly it is that leaves them so sensitive, when they were happy with satire when they were on the side dishing it out"

Paddy Tobin

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #12 on: July 04, 2008, 07:59:13 PM »
Following Lampwick's posting I have done a little reading on Primula 'Garryard' and P. 'Guinivere' in "A Heritage of Beauty" by Dr. E. Charles Nelson. Charles was the taxonomist at the Botanic Gardens in Glasnevin, Dublin; always had a  very keen interest in plants of Irish origin and was author of this book, published by the Irish Garden Plant Society, an organisation with aims very similar to those of the National Council for the Conservation of Plants and Gardens in the U.K.

Here is what he has to say on this primula:

'Garryard' - origins before 1935
syn: perhaps 'Guinivere'

A mauve-pink polyanthus with yellow eye, red stemmed and floriferous; olive bronze floiage, crushed strawberry flowers carried in polyanthus form.

Origin: a primrose called 'Garyard' (sic) was shown at the Alpine Garden Society's show on 2 and 3 April 1953, and a black and white photograph published. I believe this is the plant we now call 'Guinivere' . It was listed for sale by Ballawley Park Nursery, Dundrum, Dublin in 1937.

The name Garryard is widely abused in primrose circles, not to mention frequently misspelled. Garryarde being the most frequent (there is no final e). I have seen it used, invalidly, as a speudospecific epithet (Primula garryarde)! The name comes from Garryard Hourse situated near Naas in Co. Kildare. Whether this particular primrose came from that house is not certain.

Garryard (or Garryarde) has been prefixed to the name of any primrose with bronze foliage - that is any primrose thought to resemble the original Garryard primrose, namely 'Garryard Appleblossom', in foliage. The whole group is miscellaneous and of diverse origins, although most cultivars are perhaps hybrids between P. juliae and the common primrose P. vulgaris.


'Garryard Appleblossom'  - origins early 1900s
Single, polyanthus type; flowers looking like a bunch of apple blossom, pink and white, stems red to 10 cm tall; foliage deep bronze.

Origin: There is as much confusion about the primrose named 'Apple Blossom', as about one (or many) named 'Garryard'. Cecil Monson used 'Garryard Appleblossom' as the name for the original of the Garryard family of primroses. He describes it as follows: "It has splendid bronze leaves exactly like those of a wild primrose in shape and texture. The plant also behaved in all respects like a wild thing - it grew and increased and multiplied. Over these lovely leaves was carried a huge head of splendid white and pink blossoms exactly like a cluster of appleblossom. This was  carried on a strong , sturdy, red, almost hairy stem about five inches long...I can almost say that that was the one and only true Garryard."

This primrose was 'somehow...produced' at Garryard, near Johnstown, Naas, Co. Kildare by J. Whiteside-Dane anpit 1910, according to Cecil Monson. James Whiteside Dane's address is not given as Garryard until 1912, and by 1922 he was living in Co. Monaghan, so the date of 'Appleblossom' has to be between those years. A plant listed as "Dane's Primrose" was distributed from the Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin to Sir C. Barrington at Glenstal, Co. Limerick in March 1920, and it is interesting to note that ten  months before, in May 1919, James Whiteside Dane was given four different plants from Glasnevin - it is not too fanciful to suggest that he received these in exchange for his primrose, although the Glasnevin records do not mention a donation from him.

Hope the above is of some help with background information. It seems that "Garryard" came to be applied to several primulas with bronze foliage and does not indicate any connection with the original 'Garryard' nor with the original garden. It seems that these bronze foliage plants were crosses between P. juliae and P. vulgaris. David might comment on this last as I am not well up on primulas.

I grow P. 'Guinivere' myself and have kept it going for at least 20 years. My preference is for division shortly after flowering but I always take the precaution of giving lots of water before lifting, adding lots of compost when replanting and then watering generously again until well established. However, I don't always manage to do this and find division at any time of the year is perfectly fine. This is a little like the advice an Irish gardening lady gave when asked when one should take a cutting of a particularly rare and precious plant - she replied, 'whenever you are offered one'.

With the primula I grow, I find it more important, than the timing of division, to spread plants of each primula around the garden in as many locations as possible in hopes of saving them from vine weevil grubs.

Long winded or what?

Paddy
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David Nicholson

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2008, 10:06:25 AM »
Paddy, interesting tale. I agree with you, I remain convinced that all the bronzed leaved Primulas stemmed from P. juliae and P. vulgaris crosses and that some were bee orientated and some were 'engineered'. Interesting too about the final 'e' on Garryard. I have never spelt it with the 'e' until a couple of weeks ago when I found an article on the Internet which suggested how 'infra dig' it was to spell Garryard without the ending 'e'. Ah! so what does the Internet know! ;D

I don't think we should regard GG as some kind of 'Holy Grail' but rather as a pretty little plant with many others like it.
David Nicholson
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"Victims of satire who are overly defensive, who cry "foul" or just winge to high heaven, might take pause and consider what exactly it is that leaves them so sensitive, when they were happy with satire when they were on the side dishing it out"

arisaema

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Re: Primula x ‘Garryarde Guinevere’
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2008, 10:46:35 AM »
Yes, thanks Paddy! What's your opinion on the Danish clone, is it safe to conclude that it's not the true 'Guinevere'? Could it be another of the "Garryards"?


 


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