I once had a greenhouse that practically bulged with auriculas – those elegant primulas adored by the Victorians and with a colour range unmatched anywhere in horticulture.
But I had never before seen one growing in the wild, as they do in the Alps, until my holiday in Austria last May. On a steep mountain bank above the town of St Wolfgang, I snapped this wild wonder – a lone plant with a wild clematis as a neighbour.
The auricula, aka Dusty Miller because of its layer of powder on its leaves, looked a delight with its solitary stem of canary yellow fragrant flowers with a white throat.
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