Papaver Somniferum!!! (smile)

SEEDSOWER - 4/5July 8, 1999

I broadcast seeds in about eight different areas with various colors/varieties of somniferum. Only one patch had seedlings that survived, and they are now blooming, saying "look at me, look at me!"

They're a beautiful baby pink, fully double and frilly like the most beautiful peony. (perhaps that's why the seed package refered to them as the "peony poppy".

I wish you could see them...but I havn't yet figured out a way to scan my pictures and save them at a decent size for viewing.

Anyone else have somniferum that they JUST love?! Would anyone be willing to trade some seeds this fall?



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Daphne - Zone 8 in Tacoma, Wa

Sandy, I am unfamiliar with somniferum but the color sounds lovely. I'd be happy to trade you some sweet william (tall) and/or annual candytuft - all pinks and white, both of which have grown very well in my garden if I scatter the seed in the fall. Please email me if this sounds good to you - or anyone else. I get TONS of seeds of these two. Last year I sowed them in separate areas, but next year I plan to mix the two as they bloom about the same time and the colors are harmonious. I'd love to trade for anything I can direct sow that comes in blue/purple/pink/white shades.

    Bookmark   July 14, 1999 at 2:13AM
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I love love love my Papaver somniferums too!! Mine are a really great bright pink with purple splotches at base of petals, (single blooms). They self sow like mad here, and force me to keep my garden soil fertile, which is how they seem to like it. They germinate all over the place and I allow patches of them to grow here and there, thinning them somewhat when small. Mine grow really tall if they have found a spot they like (at least 4 feet). I collect the seed for trading and for baking. Someone from the seed exchange sent me a recipe for a delicious and easy poppy seed cake. Email and we can trade!

    Bookmark   July 15, 1999 at 10:11PM
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Aren't these 'peony-poppies' just the lovliest things?!!
I've had the solidly packed doubles in a dark burgundy for three years and the soft pale pink for two. This year I tried the white with limited success but there will be more next year. I can't get along without them.

Another poppy, a bit less robust and a very full double, is a strong pink/rosy red. It resembles a carnation because the petals have dainty serrated edges. Name??? It too is lovely.

    Bookmark   August 17, 1999 at 11:59PM
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Sara T the Brit in CT - 6

None of my seeds germinated. I think the sparrows got them all. Better luck next year I hope

    Bookmark   August 18, 1999 at 5:01PM
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JonPen - 8

I have heirloom strains of the bright red ones that have
blooms as large as teacups....most are fully double but some
are giant singles....all are the same great bright red color. They self-sow readily, but I always sow more in selected cleared spots at Thanksgiving and by April and May
they are in their beautiful with the dogwoods in
bloom here in central Mississippi.I'd be happy to trade/swap some of these for other colors, such as pink or white. E-mail me if interested. Thanks.

    Bookmark   August 31, 1999 at 9:19PM
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Larry - 5a Indiana

I had a few "Opium Poppies" this year in my herb garden and collected and stored the seed. I would love to have these pop up all over my herb garden next year, when do I scatter the seed for flowers next year? I had heard to scatter some in the late fall and to scatter in the very early spring? Is this correct?

    Bookmark   October 5, 1999 at 4:53PM
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kristen - 4

Iv'e been trying to locate seeds for the pink double peony
types for years.Iv'e posted messages on other sites before
the only responses received were to tell how illegal it was
to grow opium poppies.I told them dammit!I'm a gardener not
a junkie.So I'm thrilled to find this discussion.I am
wiiling to trade anything in my garden for seeds.Lets talk!
What would you like?My firstborn son?Like I said lets talk
I really want some!

    Bookmark   October 10, 1999 at 10:41PM
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Janet Thieman

Does anyone have any PS pods that they want to get rid of?

    Bookmark   October 12, 2000 at 11:09PM
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Carole(north east)

How could one ever be without them!yeah the 'mounties'were going to 'raid' our gardens after a gardening magazine told how to process the seeds!!! Mine have gone from huge to minute,many wonderful soft colours.I still have a little seed left (give it to ever who wants it)and toss it every where in the gardens,I do some when harvesting,(but think the birds get it) then after a light snow fall,cover lightly with spruce boughs,(could use your Christmas tree)or keep seed in fridge and get it out early in spring,e-mail me if you have not found any seed. Carole NS.Canada.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2000 at 1:00PM
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Miguel Orrego

I am wandering how one germinates these seeds initially. Can they grow in large pots? When is it best to plant them and how long do they take to come up? Do they germinate best in a controled environment to then be transplanted? Do you have to give them any plant food etc. etc..

    Bookmark   June 14, 2001 at 4:18PM
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I have grown Papaver Somniferum for the last 2 years. I bought my seed from Chiltern Seeds, they sell several varieties. Park Seed and also Thompson and Morgan sell Somniferum seeds.
I have had great success starting them inside with my other annuals about 8 weeks before last frost. They, like other poppies, do not like to be transplanted, so handle with care. Quite a few grew on their own in the garden last year. I do not know if they would grow in pots. Mine get about 3 feet tall. Some I had to stake, the heads get very heavy because of their large size which I would say is the size of a small grapefruit. The colors are beautiful reds, pink, white and purple.
I also grow laciniatum which are the feathered versions of the Paeony.
These poppies definitely put a smile on my face when I see them.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2002 at 10:52PM
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seedsower(z5 WISC)

Ha ha, hee hee LOL! I can't believe this post has been here in the forum since summer of 1999! I have since learned to post pics and have grown many different types of somniferum since I posted this. Still trying to get that applegreen somniferum that's in the T&M catalog though! In my opinion, everyone should grow somniferums!


    Bookmark   February 9, 2002 at 11:15PM
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I too just love these poppies. Six years ago I moved into a house and had one tiny little lavender poppy sprouting in a weed choked flowerbed. I saved it's seeds and the next year had a dozen poppies, much larger in their cleared and amended beds. The year after that I filled two jelly jars with seeds. I traded around town and on the seed exchange for other colors and this year hope to see blooms of five different colors (red, pale pink, hot pink, white, and lavender) and three styles (single, paeony, and laciniated). I was told they are only illegal if you know what can be done with them. I'll just claim ignorance if anyone ever says 'boo' to me about it. =)

Here is a link that might be useful: my poppy patch

    Bookmark   March 1, 2002 at 12:07PM
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plummers(z5 CT)

Does anyone know where I can find pictures of the different varieties in bloom? or some way of identifing a variety such as v. nigrum, v. glabrum, etc? I've been combing the net for hours for pics with little success. It seems noone seems to label them.

A second question, when they are growing, do they cross pollinate? Might this be the reason for the lack of labels?

    Bookmark   April 23, 2002 at 3:46PM
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plummers(z5 CT)

well, I answered my second question on my own...yes they do.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2002 at 5:01PM
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I just purchased a poppy called "paeony Scarlet", do these poppies contain opium?

    Bookmark   June 10, 2002 at 11:28PM
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It is extremely likely that the 'paeony Scarlet' does contain opium.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2002 at 2:47AM
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redraj(USA zone 8)

Where should I plant the poppy seeds in Florida? Direct sun? Are they a hardy plant? How should I start the seed? Just put it in good soil and water??

    Bookmark   May 11, 2003 at 5:35PM
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I bought red Papaver Somniferum, but they are coming up lavender. The seller claims to only raise red. Is it my soil? acid?

    Bookmark   June 6, 2003 at 11:43PM
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Does anyone have any red seed to trade?

    Bookmark   May 5, 2005 at 12:05PM
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My favorite is the type that sprouts from the poppyseeds from the spice section of the grocery store! They have single lavender flowers and the bought seeds don't sprout too well, probably because they were sitting on the shelves for who-knows-how-long, but they reseed, so now I have a growing patch of vigorous plants.

All varieties in this species contain opium (though all the mature seeds have extremely small amounts and are perfectly edible), but I've heard that the variety commercially grown for it's seed has low levels of opium throughout it's life, so that the growers can't have a side-trade of opium. I believe the high-opium poppy is a single red. Of course, there is a legal trade of natural opium as well, because several pain medicines (morphine et al.) are derived from the poppy.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2005 at 5:55PM
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Interesting that this discussion has been going on for about 6 years, lol. I've only seen poppies here in Mobile once, and you wouldn't believe what the lady growing them went through to get themt to grow, but they were gorgeous.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2005 at 3:50AM
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I'm soo confused. I just ordered P. Somnif poppie seeds from poppies internatinoal. They only offered two types. Red "oriental" single flowers, and "Paper Whites". I paid $55 each for a gram of seed. I have no idea how many that is. Now I see sites offering P. Somnif for $2.50. Also see everyone talking about colors. Lavender and salmon> Did I order the right seeds.? Did I pay too much. I was looking for the opium variety. Where can I order this somthing peony everyone is talking about and is it s true P. Somnif.? Also need planting, growing and fertilizing advice. I live in a cold climate Z5B and don't know when to plant. Direct sow? Start indoors?Any advice GREATLY appreciated.I LOVE poppies and would love to grow colors other than red and white. But red takes me back to my childhood and the VFW giving out those shiny red flowers.Any info on the colored variety or where to order from. I do want them to be the opium variety though. They are just soooo nice. Thanks!

    Bookmark   November 11, 2005 at 7:43AM
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philmont_709n2(z6 Ohio)

arent Papaver Somniferum illeagal?? just wondering because opium poppies sound illegal.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2005 at 10:05PM
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ljrmiller(z7 NV)

You can own all the (opium/P. somniferum) seed you want. It's illegal to *culture* it, though. In practice, if you stick to the double-flowered varieties and the pretty pink-red-purple-lavender ones (avoid the white and very pale lavender ones) you probably won't have any trouble with law enforcement. Most police officers aren't botanists, and if they notice your poppies at all, it will be to comment on the "pretty flowers". That said, a few people have been hassled and/or prosecuted for growing them, even though it would take acres of poppies in order to produce enough for even a mild "high".

    Bookmark   November 16, 2005 at 1:04PM
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I will apologize for my ignorance in advance. I am a first year gardener and have just bought a house. I found the most beautiful poppies I've ever seen! Big as dinner plates with a nice coral/orange petal. Are the seeds inside the pod or are they the little things in the center of the flower that look like saffron?

    Bookmark   June 19, 2007 at 7:47AM
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in answer to isaumur: The seeds are in the pods that form after the flower drops its petals. Just let the pod grow and mature and it will split open and self-seed. If you want to gather the seeds wait until you can hear the seeds rattling around in it when you shake the pod. That will be just before the pod splits open and naturally disperses the seeds. I had the same huge poppies this year...I've never seen them that large before. My neighbor down the street had a stand of poppies over 5 feet tall!

    Bookmark   June 23, 2007 at 6:20PM
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Has anyone ever had any success growing Papaver Somniferum indoors and if so what type of lights did you use for the indoor lighting source and what type of soil .

    Bookmark   September 19, 2007 at 10:25PM
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Ironman MA

I'm looking at my somniferum poppies I have growing in the window as I read all these posts.According to federal law,posession of all parts of the papaver somniferum plant and flower except the seeds is ILEGAL.But that will never stop me from growing them.They are just too beautiful.You guys and gals should check out have every variety of somniferum imaginable with pics and growing instructions.You can order high potency varieties from him.Oh,also........with good seeds,you only need the latex from a couple pods to get good and high.I know alot of people who grow them and noone has had a problem with the dea or anything.But technically,they are ilegal and you can be arrested for growing/posessing them!!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2011 at 7:46PM
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