Papaver spp.

herbkidFebruary 17, 2007

Hi, I bought a bag of poppy seeds called "Heirloom Pepperbox Poppy", and it lists "Papaver spp." as the botanical name. Does anyone know what kind of poppies these are?

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Papaver somniferum, breadseed poppies. These are also commonly called opium poppies as they are the source of the narcotic which is used to manufacture heroin. Although seldom enforced, it is technically illegal to grow these, so many vendors do not advertise the species very pronouncedly. Oddly, the seeds themselves are not illegal, as they are the commonly used in baking.

btw, you'd have to grow several acres of these poppies to generate any appreciable amount of opium, which is why they tend get overlooked when grown as ornamentals in a garden.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2007 at 7:39PM
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"Papaver spp" "various species of poppy": the abbreviation spp means species, plural. So it's a mixture.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2007 at 10:39PM
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