Garden Photo of the Day

Poppies

These ones won't make you sleep

Maker:L,Date:2017-10-18,Ver:5,Lens:Kan03,Act:Kan02,E-Y

The poppy family includes some of the world’s favorite garden flowers. Huge, bowl-shaped flowers, rich colors, and delicate, crepe-paper petals make these flowers irresistible. There are so many wonderful poppies worthy of growing in every garden. Here are a few of my favorites.

Oriental poppy (Papaver orientale, Zones 3–7 ) brightens the early summer garden with huge blooms in shades of orange, scarlet, and crimson. One of the toughest, longest lived perennials out there, this is a plant that will still be going strong decades after you first plant it, just as long as it gets plenty of sun. The only flaw to this great plant is that after flowering, it goes completely dormant, leaving a big hole in the garden. So plant it in the back of a bed, or surrounded by other plants that will come up and fill in the spot for the second half of the gardening season.

Maker:L,Date:2017-10-18,Ver:5,Lens:Kan03,Act:Kan02,E-Y

Corn poppy (Papaver rhoeas, annual). This poppy gets its name from its habit of showing up as a weed in agricultural fields in Europe. For a weed, it can be a little difficult to grow in gardens. It hates to be transplanted, so you have to sow the seeds directly where they will bloom, either in the fall or earliest spring. Sow the seeds directly on the soil surface, keep weeds from swallowing them up, and you’ll be rewarded by armloads of brilliant red flowers. And if they are happy, they will self-sow and come back year after year.

Corn poppy isn’t always red—there are numerous selections in various shades of pink, and even ones with extra petals. This pure white form is particularly lovely.

The blue poppy (Meconopsis bentonicifolia, Zones 4–7) is the most prized and difficult of the poppies. This exquisite plant is native to the heights of the Himalayas, where winters are cold and summers are cool. Even a bit of summer heat is death for this lovely plant, and in the United States it is only really growable in places like Seattle, Maine, Alaska, and northern Michigan. But the rest of us can dream.
An unusual poppy relative, the red prickly poppy (Argemone sanguinea, annual), is native to Texas, where it blooms in sheets along the roadsides along with blue bonnets and other iconic Texas wildflowers. Sow it like you would a corn poppy in fall or early spring, and it will bring its rich, wine-red flowers to your garden as well.

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Comments

  1. Cenepk10 05/29/2018

    I have never had success with poppies... it was so nice to see the pics.

  2. User avater
    meander_michaele 05/29/2018

    I remember the first time I saw a large clump of perennial oriental poppies in a "regular" person's garden (meaning not a public garden). They were the bright and vibrant orange color. Even though shortcut exclamations like OMG were not yet in usage, my jaw dropped and I stared at them in marvel. The owner explained how the foliage completely died out so you had to be a little strategic about where you planted them but, oh, my gosh, what a glorious sight while they were at their peak.

  3. user-7017435 05/29/2018

    Thank you for this colorful post on yet another overcast and humid day in central Md. Poppies don't do well in my garden either but I do appreciate their gentle beauty.
    Thank you & good luck, Joe

  4. carolineyoungwilliams 05/29/2018

    Thank you for sharing your gorgeous Poppies. Their colors are breathtaking. I love Poppies.

  5. cheryl_c 05/29/2018

    We have a feral poppy that grows in Missouri, first catalogued by Julian Steyermark. It is delicate, about 10-14 inches tall, light orange, and grows at least in limestone glades, and perhaps elsewhere. These photos show how flamboyant poppies can be, and others in this area have had great luck with the annual kinds. Thanks for sharing these pictures.

  6. PatinMapleValley 05/29/2018

    Loved the poppies!

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