Elsie Reford began growing primula at precisely the same time that the most interesting species were being introduced by plant hunters working in Tibet, Burma and China. Primroses vary in colour and blooming period. More than thirty species and cultivars of primula, such as Primula auricula (yellow and purple), P. sikkimensis, P. elatior, and P. florindae are displayed in mass plantings. The most spectacular by far is the Primula vialii, with its characteristic red-topped spikes, which has earned it the nickname, the red-hot poker primrose. This primula opens from the bottom up accentuating its extra-terrestrial appearance. Through a careful selection of species, there is always something in bloom in the Primula Glade.