A Gardening Year

The adventures and misadventures of an heirloom gardener

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Poppies I Have Grown

I think I should give up trying to grow poppies. Last year, I planted so-called “Flemish Antique” poppies that were supposed to look like this:

What I got was this:

Undaunted, this year I tried two other types of poppies. In the Purple Garden, it was Hungarian Breadseed poppies:

All I got was one, sickly plant:

Same story in the Entry Garden. I ordered Pink Peony poppies:

I got one sickly plant that looked nothing like that:

And those are just the annual poppies I’ve tried to grow. I’ve already given up on oriental poppies. No matter how or where I plant them, they refuse to grow altogether. So I’m going to stick to the free poppy seeds I receive in the mail every year.

They germinate, grow and bloom with little or no care. They come in singles and doubles and a multitude of colors including picotee. I conscientiously saved seed last year and ended up with too many. This year, as my first experiment for the 2008 growing year, I’m going to allow them to self sow and see what colors, what forms and how many come back.


At 7:57 AM, Blogger Naturegirl said...

Oh my that Flemish antique is a beauty! Such a shame that you did not get what you bargained for! I suppose that is what we love about gardening we just try again next year! I am finding that some of my exotic lilies
are changing color from last year or
come up where I did NOT plant them!!

At 2:00 PM, Blogger OldRoses said...

NG, I've just started planting lilies. How exciting that they change color and come up where they weren't planted. Thanks for the warning!

At 6:24 PM, Anonymous nikkipolani said...

Just visiting your blog today - I'm having a lousy year with seeds - but your freebie seeds look great!

At 9:42 PM, Blogger ~~ Melissa said...

This reminds me of some fancy bulbs I've bought over the years. The actual plant size and colours never match the catalogue photos.

I'm going to try some poppy seeds too. I've always just popped the packet in the fridge for thinking over.

At 9:56 PM, Blogger Ki said...

Someone's been selling you some bad seed or plants. I would ask for my money back. I wouldn't give up though, just buy from a reliable source. Some of the larger varieties of poppy take two year to flower. Could it be that you only had vegetative growth this year and a stray poppy seed from your freebies got sown next to the named ones and that's what you are seeing?

At 10:13 PM, Blogger Connie said...

I have found that the larger, fuller poppies like rich soil to really make for nice blooms, whereas the Shirley poppies are not fussy about soil. I've done several posts on poppies, as they are one of my favorite flowers. In the most recent, entitled 'Poppy Love' I showed the same poppy raised in two different soils...what a difference! I grew breadseed poppy this year also, and it was not at all impressive.

At 1:37 AM, Blogger OldRoses said...

Nikki, I had a bad year with seeds from Parks. Where did you get yours?

Melissa, you just can't go wrong with free!

Ki, I purchase my poppy seeds from Seeds of Change and Select Seed,both very reputable companies. I don't normally have problems with seeds from them.

Connie, thanks for the advice. I'll try adding more compost.

At 4:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where can i get free poppy seeds ???


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