The Auricula is a Spring flowering hardy perennial originating from the upper regions of the Alps. The displays at Easton Walled Gardens give you an example of the various types to grow: Stripes, Doubles, Fancy, Alpine, Self, Edge and Borders.
If you would like to try growing them start with the Border auricula, whilst these can be grown in pots they will be very happy in the garden border. All other types require protection from rain which can damage the delicate flowers or by washing off the ‘Farina’, the white meal on some varieties.
Typically, an auricula theatre was used as a dramatic means to display the perfect blooms close up and at eye level whilst protecting them from any rain splash; an example of a theatre can be seen hanging on the wall in the Pickery.
Beware, once you start growing these, obsession follows!