If you love gorgeous flowers, consider growing poppies in your home garden. Blooming early in the growing season, they definitely steal the show.
For more ideas, also see this list of fast-growing flowers to start from seed.
This is simply about the essential, swoon-worthy, beautiful, soul-restoring service that the poppy plays in the spring garden. It’s a show stopper of the best kind.
Waiting until the noisy spring flowering bulbs have faded out and before the icons of a vibrant summer garden have begun, poppies demonstrate the power of one and how brilliant repetition can be in a garden.
Which is my way of saying, I am smitten.
Come with me as we go from bud to bloom to seed production. Each stage is equally interesting and beautiful.
Want to buy poppy seeds? Shop here for Poppy Seeds at Botanical Interests (lots of varieties).
Poppy | Papaveraceae family
Shop Online: Buy poppy seeds | Botanical Interests (US shipping)
Herbaceous, flowering plants ~ annual, biennial, or short-lived perennials
- Eschscholzia californica (California poppies) – reseeding annuals; perennial in zones 8 to 10.
- Papaver rhoeas (Corn, Flander, Shirley poppies) – reseeding annuals
- Papaver nudicaule (Iceland poppies) – cold-loving, short-lived perennials (zones 2 to 8)
- Papaver orientale (Oriental poppies) – perennial zones 3 to 8
- Papaver somniferum (Somniferum poppies, “bread-seed” poppies) – annuals
After the spring flowering bulbs have faded, these bursts of colour start to appear.
As the petals unfurl, a masterpiece is revealed inside.
The bold colors command all the attention.
Look at the red and orange colors! They are perfect with the jewel-toned peonies nearby.
Here a sea of orange poppies surround the birdbath.
From Flower To Seed
Take photos daily and witness the mysterious transformation from bloom to seed production. The secret lies in the middle of the flowers.
To ensure I save the best seeds, I mark the best blooms with organza bags—because the best flowers have the best genes. Later on I’ll place the bags over the flower heads to catch the seeds.
You can read more about this tip here: how to save your best seeds for future sowing.
While red poppies are the classic color, they come in all sorts of colors and values.
This ruffly coral poppy is as lovely as a peony or rose.
As the blooms begin to fade, the flower petals look like watercolor paintings.
While peak bloom time is lovely, post-peak is its own wonderful thing.
And then, like magic, the seed pod reveals itself. What an intriguing work of art.
We have no excuse not to fall in love with nature.
And poppies never disappoint.
Lest we forget.
Poppies are a symbol of remembrance to commemorate fallen soldiers and all who have served to protect our rights and freedoms.
November 11 was originally called Armistice Day. It is now Veterans Day in the United States, and Remembrance Day in Canada and the United Kingdom, Australia, and other countries.
Learn more about how this wild plant became an important symbol of remembrance in this episode of the Empress of Dirt podcast.NEW! Click play to listen:
~Melissa the Empress of Dirt ♛