This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
Now is the time to commence preparing a stock of this most beautiful and indispensable winter and spring flowering plant We suppose you are already in possession of an old plant or two to commence operations on. Such being the case, prepare as many small sized thumb-pots as you have cuttings; also prepare the following compost - two parts well decomposed leaf-mold, one part good turfy loam, and one part silver sand; let the whole be well mixed before using, as on this a great part of your success depends. Having the above requisites prepared, with a sharp knife take your cuttings off close under the second joint from the parent plant, leaving the first joint to supply you with a second crop of cuttings; fill your pots one-third full with broken crocks or charcoal, and the other two-thirds with the compost; with a small stick make a hole in the center of each pot, placing a cutting in each and filling the hole with silver sand; give a small quantity of water to settle them firmly; then place your pots under a bell or hand-light in the warmest part of the green-house, and with a little attention to watering and ventilation, in fife or six weeks you will have strong, chubby plants that will amply repay you for the little extra care you may bestow on them, in the profusion of flowers they will give you the following season.
As soon as they have filled the cutting pots with roots, give them a shift into pots two sizes larger, adding at the same time a few handfuls of well pulverised charcoal to the compost, which will have a very beneficial effect in keeping the roots in a sound and healthy condition through the hot summer months. Keep them in the green-house, as near the glass as possible, till the middle of May, shading in bright sunshine, when they may be placed in a frame facing the north until the middle of September, and then should be finally shifted into their flowering pots, two sizes larger than their last shift, returning them to their old quartors in the green-house, when they will soon commence flowering and continue to do so till the return of hot weather. Great care must be taken in watering this plant in the summer season, as then it is comparatively at rest All blooms that make their appearance before the final potting should be carefully removed.
[Mr. Dexter's communication should have appeared in our last number. This was his intention when he referred to the season. We can not too strongly recommend these beautiful Double Primroses to all who have green-houses. Blooming profusely in a low temperature, they furnish most reliable contributions to the winter bouquet We can cheerfully endorse the soundness of Mr. Dexter's brief instructions. - Ed].