Poppies are beautiful, attractive and vibrant border flower plants of your garden which can give a great performance. This plant has different importance in the world according to culture and religion. They also have their own importance due to the medicinal properties. learn How to Grow Poppies, Growing Poppies in pots, Papaver care, pests, and diseases advice by our experts.
More than 100 species of the poppies family are annual, biennial and perennial. Opium poppy, corn poppy, oriental poppy are popular among the known subspecies of this plant.
Poppies are easy to grow from seed, allowing you to create a charm by adding striking colors to your garden. The gaps are suitable to be filled or placed in the border. Once planted, they self-grow on their own time.
Overview of Poppy plants (Papaver )
Scientific name Papaver somniferum
Common name Poppy
Plant type Flowering plant
Sun requires Full Sun to Partial shade
Blooming time Late spring and early summer
Flower colors Red, Yellow, Orange, Purple, and Pink
Soil Well-drained, Rich fertile, acidic soil
Soil pH 6.5 – 7.5
How to Grow Poppies
Soil and Location
Poppies tend to prefer loose and well-drained soil. Excellent drainage is required in the soil for the best results. For this, enrich your garden soil with a little sand and well-rotted manure to improve. Prepare the bed well with a fork a few weeks before planting.
Poppies plants prefer full sun or partial shade area. Generally, at least six hours of sunlight a day is required to perform well. If you live in a hot climate, preserve it to avoid the heat of the afternoon.
In the spring or autumn, Poppies can be directly sown in your garden. If you want to plant early, March and May are the appropriate planting time, but you should wait until summer for a healthy show. You will get plenty of flowers in the season when sown between the end of August and October. Start perennial poppies seeds in early spring. Annual varieties in zones 3 to 4 from the same time, and if you live in zones 8 to 10, you can sow it directly in the fall.
Perennial poppies water about 1 inch deep once every week during the summer and fall seasons. This water is sufficient to keep the soil moist about 6 inches. Place 1-inch thick mulch layer around the plants to protect moisture and protect from weeds.
Balanced fertilizer 10-10-10 in the first year spring and midsummer to give your poppies plant. This will give the plant equal amounts of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Read and apply the recommended rate on the package before giving fertilizer plants. This plant usually requires fertilizer in the first year itself, which makes it established.
How to grow Poppies from seeds
- The seeds of poppies you can sow directly in your garden bed, it will grow well.
- Dig and loosen your garden soil about 4 inches deep. Add fertilizer to the soil for the necessary amendment in soil, it will develop nutrients in your plant.
- To prevent over-seeding, divide the sand into two parts and mix poppies seeds in one part. Now sprinkle this mixture evenly over the prepared garden. Make the same distance of about one seed per square inch.
- Cover the seeds with a thin layer of light loose soil. Keep in mind, poppies require light to germinate.
- After planting the seed, mist the bed regularly with water, so that the moisture required in the soil remains.
- If the soil temperature is 12-15 ° C, then these plants germinate within about 15 days.
- Thin the germination, so that the remaining plants grow from 6 to 10 inches apart by 1 inch in height.
How to poppies in pots
- You can easily plant poppies in pots, for this you need fertile soil and the right size of the pot. Just give your pot proper lighting and water. There are many varieties available, you can choose according to different colors and sizes.
- To grow poppy plants, choose a medium size (12-15 inch diameter) container. Check the drainage holes before filling the soil in the container.
- You can use rich loam soil for your plants. Make amends by adding manure to your potting soil. Fill the container with this mixture and leave about 1 inch of empty space above the ring.
- Sow the seeds of poppy plants directly above the soil. After planting the seeds, gently water the seeds and keep the pot in a light spot. Keep the moisture in the soil until it germinates.
- When the plant becomes slightly mature after germination, spread it thinly, about 4-6 inches apart.
- Now place your container in a place where it receives full sun 6-8 hours per day. In high heat, areas shelter it in the afternoon.
Some of poppies varieties
You can choose annual, biennial and perennial flowers depending on the variety of colors.
1. Flanders or field poppies
Field poppies are the easiest to grow, an annual variety that bees prefer. It is an ideal flower for gardeners.
These are thrive best in California populations USDA zones 9–11. They are also easy to care, and perform well in infertile soil.
3. Oriental poppies
Oriental poppies are long-term plants, these biennial and perennial poppies bring unique colors to the garden or border.
The Opium poppy is a good option to use in culinary. Its seeds are used by people in food. Seeds are used in bread and cakes to add extra flavor and crunch. But note that not every opium poppy seed is edible. Do not consume any other part of poppies, it can be poisonous.
- Immediately separate deadheads and faded flowers. This encourages more bloom.
- Water your plant well during dry spells but do not overwater.
- These are self-seeded plants so that the withered flowers are separated before drying to avoid unwanted spread.
- To collect the seeds, harvest the pods and keep them in a dry place. After the beans turn brown and opening, collect them in a jar. Dry it well before storing it in a jar.
Pests and disease
If you grow your poppies in sunny conditions then they are almost trouble-free. In case of heavy rains and stormy strong winds, they can be damaged, take them to a shelter. They are free from pests or diseases, but due to moisture and lack of light, powdery mildew can affect the plant. Due to this fungal disease, there is a white powder-like layer on the leaves and stems in spring or summer. In case of excess, the plant should be cut from the ground level and to prevent the disease in the soil, remove the affected leaves.
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