Rachel is a passionate plantsperson, YouTuber and author living in Ireland. She grows a wide range of hardy subtropical and tropical plants.
A Guide to Growing Beautiful Annual Poppies
Spring is the perfect time for sowing these beautiful, colorful flowers directly in situ in the garden. Follow the instructions below to get started growing fabulous, annual poppies.
Note: Poppy seeds are very fine, and in order to sow them evenly, you'll want to use fine horticultural sand.
How to Sow Poppies From Seed
- Make sure that all of the weeds have been removed from the area where you will be sowing the seeds. If you see any little weeds in the soil, you will want to remove these first.
- Rake over the soil to prepare it to a fine tilth so that the poppies can get a good foothold. Remove any stones that might be in the ground.
- Next, make little ridges. These straight lines will help you to identify what is a weed and what is a poppy when the seedlings start to come up. You might not think to make ridges because you want your poppies to have a nice naturalistic look, but the poppies will not push out in straight lines by the time they really start to grow.
- Prepare some fine horticultural sand in a small bowl. Open up a packet of poppy seeds and pour them into the sand; mix well.
- Sprinkle the sand-and-poppy mix very gingerly into the ridges.
- Make sure to water the seedlings really well.
Do Poppies Withstand Frost?
Poppies are hardy annuals, which means you can sow them a little bit earlier than other annuals and they can tolerate some cold. However, once your poppies are in the ground and start to sprout, if you do get a late frost, you're going to have to cover those seedlings. Otherwise, the frost might take them out.
How to Harvest Poppy Seeds
That is how you sow annual poppies in situ. Could anything be easier? In the summer in June or July, you're going to have a swathe of fabulous colors to look forward to. Happy gardening!
More Ways to Brighten Up Your Garden
- How to Start Dahlias in Pots
Learn how to start dahlias in pots and enjoy beautiful flowers come summer.
- 3 Easy Ways to Propagate Begonias
Learn three easy ways to propagate begonias using leaf and stem-cutting techniques.
- How to Grow and Successfully Reflower Clivia
With proper care—such as careful attention to temperature and pot size—you can enjoy gorgeous Clivia blooms every spring.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Rachel Darlington