Primrose officinalis

Popular names: spring primrose, rams, primrose.

Primrose officinalis (Primula officinalis Jaeq.)Perennial herbaceous plant of the primulaceae family (Primulaceae), up to 30 cm high, with a vertical or obliquely growing brown rhizome and a bunch of thin roots. The stem is rounded, erect. The leaves are collected in a basal rosette, ovate-oval, oval or oblong, wrinkled. Flowers in inflorescence umbel, drooping on one side, golden yellow, with orange spots on the throat. The flowers have a honey scent. The fruit is an ovoid brown multi-seeded capsule. Flowering from April to June, fruits ripen in July. Propagated by seeds, division of bushes and cuttings. The plant is now becoming rare. Included in the list of species in need of preventive protection and rational use. It grows in dry meadows, in thickets of shrubs, along river banks, in mixed and broad-leaved forests. In ancient Greece, the primrose was considered the medicinal flower of Olympus, it was called the flower of the twelve gods – “dodecatheon” and they believed that it arose from the body of the young man Paralysos who died of love. Out of pity for him, the gods turned him into a flower. Ancient doctors treated them with various kinds of paralysis. It is no coincidence that the primrose is known as the “paralytic grass.” In some states, the primrose is considered the flower of marriage. According to legend, the girl who is the first to find a primrose flower on Easter will certainly get married this year. The primrose was especially loved in England, where many legends are composed about it. They called it a magic flower and believed that tiny fairies and old gnomes were hiding in it from bad weather. As soon as the bright month will be covered with dark clouds and the first drops of rain will fall to the ground, little people look out for their favorite flower, and when they find it, they climb inside the golden corolla and comfortably accommodate themselves in it. Soon their pleasant singing is heard, but not often any of the mortals manage to hear it.


Collect the leaves at the beginning of the flowering of the plant, tearing them off with your hands. At the same time, half of the leaves on each plant are left so as not to damage flowering and fruiting. They should be dried quickly in well-ventilated areas, but it is better in ovens or dryers at a temperature of 90-120°C. Faster drying saves more vitamins. The shelf life of the leaves is 1 year. Rhizomes with roots are harvested in the fall at the beginning of the plant’s withering, or in early spring before the leaves grow back. The dug roots are cleaned from the ground, the aerial parts are cut off with a knife, quickly washed with cold water and dried in the open air. Then they are dried in rooms with good ventilation or in dryers at a temperature of 50-60°C. The raw material has a pleasant smell, similar to violet, and a bitter taste. The shelf life of raw materials is 3 years. However, at present, since there are other saponin-bearing plants that have an expectorant effect, the collection of rhizomes with roots and their use are discontinued. Flowers are harvested without calyxes in April – May, dried in the air. Dried flowers are blooming yellow corollas with a faint odor, sweetish taste. The shelf life of flowers is 1 year. Flowers are an export item.


Galenic products of primrose have an expectorant effect and somewhat increase the secretory activity of the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract and bronchi. The expectorant properties of the products are due to the content of triterpene glycosides in the roots of the primrose. In addition, primrose increases the activity of the ciliated epithelium and accelerates the evacuation of secretions from the respiratory tract.


Rhizome. Infusion – as an expectorant for catarrh of the upper respiratory tract, chronic tracheitis and bronchitis, with bronchopneumonia. It is widely used in combination with chamomile, calendula officinalis, angelica officinalis and common anise. In folk medicine, decoction, tincture and syrup – as an expectorant in the treatment of tuberculosis, bronchitis, asthma, pneumonia; sedative, antispasmodic, diuretic, mild laxative, analgesic (for convulsions and paralysis); infusion – for constipation, insomnia, general weakness, poor appetite, cough, dizziness, diseases of the kidneys and bladder (as a diuretic). A decoction in the form of lotions and compresses – with bruises. In the Transcaucasus, the powder is used for impotence. The aerial part. Included in the ointment for the treatment of eczema of the head. Decoction in folk medicine – with bronchitis, pneumonia, whooping cough (as an expectorant). Juice – to reduce bleeding gums with scurvy, improve vision in C- and A-hypo- and beriberi, normalize digestion; with influenza, tonsillitis, bronchitis, hay fever; as a diaphoretic, antipyretic and laxative. Essence from a fresh flowering plant is used in homeopathy. Leaves. Infusion – with hypo- and beriberi, poor appetite, general weakness, cough, scurvy, pneumonia, bronchitis, gout, rheumatism. Flowers. Decoction, infusion – diaphoretic and expectorant for bronchitis; tonic for hysteria, paralysis, dizziness, migraine, insomnia, inflammation of the urinary tract, articular and other forms of rheumatism. Juice – for colds, dizziness, insomnia, paralysis, heart disease, rheumatism, kidney disease, migraine, malaria, emphysema, whooping cough.


Infusion of roots and rhizomes of primrose (Infusum radicis et rhizoma Primulae): 10 g (1 tablespoon) of raw materials are placed in an enamel bowl, pour 200 ml of hot boiled water, cover with a lid and heat in boiling water (in a water bath) for 30 minutes, cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, filter. The remaining raw materials are squeezed out and added to the infusion. The volume of the resulting infusion is adjusted with boiled water to 200 ml. Apply 1-2 tablespoons 3-4 times every day before meals for chronic inflammatory diseases of the respiratory organs. ♦ Decoction of primrose roots and rhizomes: boil 20 g of raw materials in 400 ml of water for 15 minutes, leave for 30 minutes, then filter. Take 1/2 cup 3-4 times every day.♦ Infusion of primrose leaves: 5-10 g of leaf powder is infused in 200 ml of boiling water for 1 hour, then filtered. Take 1 tablespoon 3-4 times every day.♦ Primrose herb decoction: boil 20 g of crushed raw materials in 200 ml of water for 20 minutes, then filter. Take 1 tablespoon 3-4 times every day.♦ Infusion of primrose flowers: 25 g of raw material is poured into 200 ml of boiling water, insisted for 30 minutes, then filtered. Take 1/2 – 1 glass 1-3 times every day.♦ Primrose juice: squeezed from the flowering aerial part of the plant (leaves, stem, flowers). Take grass juice 1 / 4-1 / 3 cup with a spoonful of honey 3 times every day before meals, flower juice – 1 teaspoon with an equal amount of honey 3 times every day, washed down with warm water or milk. CONTRAINDICATIONS AND POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS: there are people with increased susceptibility to this plant. After a few hours or days, they develop severe itching and burning in areas of the skin, in contact with primrose. The affected areas turn red, covered with blisters filled with liquid. In the future, peeling is noted at the sites of healed vesicles, and when combed, ulcers form. Contact with the mouth or upper respiratory tract of plant pollen can lead to inflammation of the mucous membranes.


The leaves are used for food. An olive-colored dye for fabrics is obtained from grass and flowers. Honey plant. Decorative, used for group plantings, in borders, borders, rock gardens.


Primrose prefers semi-shady places and loose or cohesive, sufficiently moist soils with the addition of organic fertilizers and soddy soil. On light soils, at least 20 kg of organic fertilizers per 1 m 2 are applied at a ratio of 10 kg of compost soil, 5 kg of humus and 5 kg of peat crumbs or leafy soil. On heavy soils, it is necessary to apply sand at the rate of 1-2 buckets and at least 25 kg of organic fertilizers per 1 m 2.When sowing, seeds are sown in autumn in the year of harvest, as they quickly lose their germination capacity. Sowing can also be done in spring with stratified seeds. When 1-2 true leaves appear, the seedlings dive at a distance of 10-12 cm. For 2 years they are kept in the garden, covering them with leaves for the winter with a layer of 10 cm. They are planted in a permanent place in the spring or autumn of the second year. Plants bloom in the 2-3rd year of life. Bushes are divided into small parts, every 3-5 years, preferably in early spring or in August – early September, you can immediately after flowering. If necessary, it can be transplanted during flowering. In this case, the bushes are dug up with a wet clod of earth. After planting for 10-15 days, the plants are watered abundantly every day.

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