Poppy Seeds – Choosing The Best Annual And Perennial Poppies For Your Garden

Choosing the ideal plants for your garden

With a huge array of poppy seeds ideal for germinating and growing plants for your garden, it can be hard to decide on which varieties to include. However, with many species requiring different aspects and garden environments, choosing the correct poppy type can ensure that success prevails rather than disappointment. And while many poppies will thrive in even the poorest of situations, to get the best blooms and growth out of plants, it is vital to carefully decide which varieties to use, and where to use them.

Annual California Poppies

For those with rock gardens, or perhaps a graveled area that they want to include a few plants in, a number of dwarf California poppy varieties exist perfect for the job. California poppies, Eschscholzia Californica, work very well in the rock garden as they are a drought tolerant species, meaning that they can survive the heat with little water. California poppies can also be placed at the front of garden borders, causing their flowers to rise above a lattice work of foliage and spill over edging into paths and lawns. In addition to being ideal specimens for the front of borders, they are great in pots and window boxes, bringing their cheerful blooms to areas that often need a lift. California poppies remain immensely popular with gardeners around the world who love them for their growing ease and vivid colors. Oranges, reds, salmon pinks, yellows and even whites can create fantastic displays on decked areas, patios and gazebo’s. Rose Chiffon and Purple Gleam varieties of annual dwarf poppies give pinks and lavender hints respectively, shining against otherwise dull areas. And with fall sowing providing early flowering plants the following year, these poppies can be used to bring color to the garden from the early spring through until September and October.

Other Annual Poppies

Meanwhile, further annual specimens include Papaver somniferum (the breadseed poppy), Papaver paeoniflorum (peony poppies) and Papaver laciniatum (feathery double poppies). These poppies can be perfect for bringing short-lived but intense color to a border. The taller annual poppies can be successful placed in spaces in the middle of the border, where they will rise up on graceful stems and offer elegant and stunning blooms.

Perennial Oriental Poppies

For gardeners who are looking for poppies to include in the sunny flower border, they cannot go wrong with perennial species of Oriental poppy, Papaver Orientale. Oriental poppies can play an important role in herbaceous planting, coming back year after year to provide fantastic foliage and blooms, and should be incorporated in a scheme as a staple plant. Oriental poppies are available in a selection of lovely colors including whites, oranges, reds, pinks, and lavenders. They range in height from 18 inches to over 3 feet tall. Oriental Poppies are a welcome sight in the garden and bloom early in spring once the bulbing flowers such as Tulips and Daffodils have disappeared.

Perennial Meconopsis Varieties

Often a hard area to plant, there are also perfect poppy species for shady and damp environments. The traditionally recognized blue Meconopsis betonicifolia is perfect for this area, with its Himalayan origins allowing plants to thrive in sheltered and shady aspects. For other blue flowering Meconopsis there is also Meconopsis sheldonii x Lingholm and Meconopsis horridula prattii available. In the color white, is the Meconopsis betonicifolia Alba. There is also the Meconopsis Hensol Violet which has purple blooms, Meconopsis Cambrica with yellow blooms, and Meconopsis napaulensis available in a fantastic mix of colors. Meconopsis will grow to between two and four feet tall, providing a surprising sight of color underneath a tree, or stream lined area.

Perennial Alpine Poppies

Another perennial poppy for those with rock gardens or a graveled area that needs some color, a dwarf poppy variety exists and is perfect for the job. The beautiful perennial Papaver alpinium will produce flowers of soft white, yellow, orange and salmon, which will contrast gloriously against rocky outcrops and gravel.

Poppies Are The Perfect Garden Plant

With such a wide array of poppies suitable for a number of locations, there is always the perfect plant for a gardeners needs. Meanwhile with many gardens hosting a number of different environments, a collection of plants grown from poppy seeds can be the ideal way to create stunning displays and wonderful, inspirational planting scheme.

And now, I would like to show you all of the wonderful Annual and Perennial poppy seeds available to spice up your garden scheme and make you the envy of your neighborhood. Stop by and visit the poppy seed experts at One Stop Poppy Shoppe http://www.onestoppoppyshoppe.com/ You will be glad that you did!

  1. Carol Vance
    01/31/2011 at 11:24

    What poppy do you recommend for Zones 7 & 8? I live in Fort Worth, Texas, 76109.

  2. 01/31/2011 at 16:46

    Hi Carol! All of our poppies will do just fine in zones 7 and 8. The annual varieties need to be planted asap so they are finished before the extreme heat. Give the perennial poppies a partial shade location and keep them well watered. You may want to start the perennials in peat pots.

  3. Jo Anne
    01/31/2011 at 19:27

    I live in the high desert. We do get below freezing on occasion in the winter and extremely hot in the summer (100+++). The natural soil is sand, but I do have a few rock type beds that I could fill with whatever soil is recommended.

    What types of poppies do you recommend?

  4. Bonney Bielen
    02/03/2011 at 00:25

    I live in St Cloud, MN, and want to start a poppy garden. Can I grow poppies in MN?

  5. 02/03/2011 at 17:29

    Hi Bonney! You most certainly CAN grow poppies in MN. They will love your climate there!

  6. 02/03/2011 at 17:41

    Hi Jo Anne! Poppies are naturally drought tolerent, and don’t worry about freezing temps in Winter. If you ammend the sandy soil with a large dose of compost/manure mix you will be able to grow poppies. However poppies don’t like the heat and will stop growing if it gets too hot, so it is critical that they are planted asap and finished blooming by the time those temps reach 100 degrees.

  7. Diana
    02/11/2011 at 23:37

    I’d like to grow California poppies but my soil is clay with lots of organic matter added and not well drained. Also it could get very cold between now and Spring. Would they grow in those conditions?

  8. 02/15/2011 at 08:40

    Hi Diana, Clay is fine as long as it is ammended well. If you think it is not well drained just add in a 3 inch layer of compost/manure. Do not worry about cold temps, poppies are frost tolerant and actually like the Winters chill. They will germinate when the temps are just right.

  9. JAMES
    02/24/2011 at 23:23


  10. 02/26/2011 at 13:49

    Hi James! All of our poppies will do well in your zone 4 area, so you may have your pick. As far as deer eating poppies, I have never had trouble with that. Poppies have a very bitter taste and infact all parts are considered poisionous except for the seeds. They can make you sick. Mostly the problem is that the deer will trample them to get to the tasty vegetation. I have had problems with rabbitts though, eating the tender new shoots of the oriental varieties. Hope this helps

  11. Karen Robertson
    06/01/2011 at 08:14

    Poppies are my favorite flowers but I live in Fayetteville, NC – borderline of zones 7 and 8. We are hot and humid in spring and summer (already 95 degrees here at 9 am on June 1st). Any suggestions or ideas?

  12. 06/03/2011 at 11:27

    Hi Karen, Yes, you will need to Fall plant poppies in Nov. or Dec. so that the flowering has finished by the time that your temps heat up.

  13. Linda Petrucci
    06/18/2011 at 12:18

    This is coastal Southern California, zone 10. Do you have poppies for me?

  14. 06/19/2011 at 08:56

    Hi Linda, yes, you may grow the annual poppies. Plant at the beginning of your coolest season. Poppies do not like heat so they must be grown in the wintertime in zone 10. Keep the seeds moist until the poppies are well on their way.

  15. jessica
    07/27/2011 at 13:20

    Which ones do you recommend for Seattle, Washington? I am new at gardening and unsure what to choose.

  16. 08/08/2011 at 07:53

    Jessica, All of our poppies will do well in your neck of the woods. Fall planting is best.

  17. gerald nordahl
    08/30/2011 at 16:33

    what poppys for west kentucky?
    when to plant?
    are poppys good for bees and butterflies?

  18. 08/31/2011 at 07:17

    Hi, all of our varieties will do well in your area. Best time to plant is late Fall or early Spring. Bees are attracted to poppies for their pollen. Butterflies are not attracted to poppies because they have no nectar.

  19. Jay
    05/03/2012 at 01:32

    I also live in MN. What is the optimal time to plant the poppies and when can I expect them to bloom?

  20. Jodi
    05/11/2012 at 22:19

    I live in Dallas, TX. When is the best time to plant poppies and which varietes do you recommend. I’d like to plant them in borders and pots. Thanks!

  21. 06/23/2012 at 12:23

    I live in Orlando Florida area and would love to grow poppies- can you recommend some varieties that will thrive here in zone 9-10?

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