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Meconopsis Seeds (Poppies)

August 25, 2010

meconopsis nepalensis botanical drawing woodland poppies

By the magic of google adwords, I discovered a new supplier who will be getting a bit of my business.  One Stop Poppy Shoppe has come into my life at a rather serendipitous moment.  Not one to grow flowers and  things (other than vegetables) from seed, I nonetheless experimented with a few things this summer to great success.  Sometime in late June I installed a new bed in my own garden and given that I planted lots of small shrubs (I can be patient for them to become big  for the sake of saving a buck), I have lots of open area where one day shrubs will fill.  So taking advantage of the extra room that will not always be there, I decided to throw in some seeds for plants that I love, have a hard time finding, but have never grown.  The two things I experimented with were Castor Beans (Ricinus communis) and California Poppies.   With a 100% success rate — even with a late planting, I currently have a new flush of orange flowers and the huge beautiful leaves of the Castor Bean are inspiring me for next years container plantings.

So with my growing confidence in growing poppies from seed (in usable quantities for design work), I am urged on to try greater and more interesting varieties.  Poppies are among my favorite flowers and while sadly they kinda suck as cut flowers, there is nothing better than a midsummer field full of poppies and white daisies.

meconopsis Meconopsis Lingholm blue poppy

Meconopsis Betonicifolia Alba white woodland poppy

meconopsis horridula

When google somehow took a guess at thinking I might be interested in the One Stop Poppy Shoppe, they found a good match.  With over 50 varieties of annual and Perennial Poppy seeds available, I have added this Wisconsin supplier to my short list for seeds.

When I was in England, there was a big trend for blue poppies.  They were quite the fashion about 6-7 years ago in the UK (perhaps they still are?) – It is a trend that has not quite caught on in the same way here and I wonder if it is yet to come.  I am still quite obsessed with blue and white and I think I will try all the blue varieties that are on offer  (Meconopsis Lingholm, Meconopsis  horridula prattii, Meconopsis Betonicifolia)  as well as the pretty white woodland varieties.  Have you tried to grow blue poppies and do you have any advice to pass along?

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  1. Awesome design and photographs … appreciable efforts.. thanks for providing such a beautiful blog…

  2. Genevieve says:

    Those blue Meconopsis have proven difficult to grow for me, both in San Francisco and in the redwood rain forest. Have tried a number of settings and finally gave up. I think they’re trendy because they look good, not because they’re a good garden plant for most people.

    I think the US’s Meconopsis trend hit about ten years ago (I remember a Horticulture magazine cover and a number of “Blue Plants” articles with prominant photos of Meconopsis) and fizzled quickly when everyone realized they just spent five bucks on a plant that flowered once and then keeled. At least it fizzled in my area. Don’t know anyone here who could grow the things for toffee.

    Let us know if you have success. Maybe we just get too much rain or not enough cold or something?

  3. Laurie Brown says:

    One Stop Poppy Shoppe is a great source; they ship very fast and their seeds germinate well. No affiliation, just a satisfied customer.

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