Red poppies after rain

Poppies are among the most colorful flowers to grow in the backyard. Knowing how to grow poppy seeds will be certain that they live in your garden for several years. Most poppies are grown from seed. Poppies also self seed so that every year you’ll have more and more to enjoy.

Growing Poppies from Seed

Start your poppy seeds by spreading the seed out in autumn or very early in spring. Scatter them sparingly or you’ll have to narrow them afterwards. The seed requires light to germinate, so be sure not to bury the seed. The seed also enjoys a cold spell, so sow in late Fall before the cold weather arrives, or you can sow the seed in very early spring.

In early spring, the cold weather will give way to warm spring sunshine and the seeds will get sufficient moisture to germinate. In warmer regions where winters are mild, it is far better to sow the seed in autumn or on your coolest months. The seed will remain dormant until the weather begins to warm up. From germination to blossom is only a couple weeks along with the late spring series will be spectacular.

Grow the poppies in full sun and in well drained soil or the plants will get waterlogged and keel over. Make certain that you amend the region well with compost to provide a great deal of nourishment to the plants in addition to help with inadequate drainage. Use a slug and snail bait as these creatures have a propensity to gobble up the very small shoots as they emerge.

The midst of a perennial border is an perfect place for poppies as they’ll be taller than many edging plants, and the oriental varieties dying after blossom season, the empty space they leave in the garden won’t be noticed. If planted at the center of the garden you can fill the gaps with other summer perennials like phlox or salvias. If planted in front of a garden bed you can fill the gaps with summer annuals.

After the poppies flower they create an equally appealing flower head which has thick black, brown, gray, white or blue seeds. These can fall around the mother plant to provide you more poppies for next year.

Alternatively it is possible to harvest the seed head for autumn crafts since they dry beautifully and maintain their shape. Of course some of those seeds like the yearly breadseed poppy’Papaver somniferum seeds’ are edible and may be used in cakes, breads and other recipes.

Types of Poppy Seeds

There are many basic kinds of poppy seeds and they’re all developed the same way.

      • Oriental Poppy Seeds – The most frequent poppy and comes in reds, oranges, purples and whites. Perennial.
      • Peony Poppies – Spectacular fully double flower in reds, oranges, purples and white. Annual.
      • Meconopsis Poppies – Sometimes known as the blue poppies but come in reds, yellows, purples and white too. Perennial.
      • Taffeta Poppies – Pastel colors and a feathery flower head that’s extremely attractive. Annual.
      • Papaver Somniferum seeds – The bread seed poppy and a stunningly beautiful flower in a full assortment of colours and shapes. Annual.
      • California Poppies – These are an entirely different botanical family to another poppies and are distinguished by the title Eschscholzia. Shorter than the species poppies and self indulgent to cover a place in just a couple years.


Whether you’re planting a new garden area, or adding to an existing garden, grow poppies in your garden for early Spring vibrant blooms. Poppies are carefree plants which will continue to grace your garden every year. Soon you will wonder how you ever got along without those Poppy Seeds.