Bring the color of the French countryside into your own garden with this quintessentially French wild red poppy (Papaver rhoeas
), known here as the coquelicot
. Blazing in late spring and throughout summer along roadways and especially in wheatfields, this brilliant, carefree flower is one of the few blossoms that is a true crimson red. It is not
orange like the perennial poppy. Annual poppy is a lover of disturbed soil, so all you need to do is keep cultivate lightly and scatter the seeds (if they haven't already done so naturally) to have them germinate year after year almost effortlessly.
The seedpods, incidentally, are very ornamental for dried arrangements. And did you know? Contrary to popular misinformation, poppies make exquisite cutflowers. Simply sear the ends of their stems briefly in a flame before putting in water.
Plant in full sun; rich soil is not necessary. Drought-resistant. Annual poppy may be planted anytime from early spring through late fall or even during winter. Fall- and winter-planted seeds will bloom vigorously and early the following year.
Wild poppy is traditionally used medicinally in Europe and the Middle East. It is also a dye plant. This is not
, however, opium or breadbox poppy (Papaver somniferum
Size: 1 gm (approx. 10,000 seeds)