Prepare the ground properly. Till up the area you want to plant poppies in.
A power tiller works best but the old fashioned, shovel, pick, hoe and rake
will work too. It is a good idea to add some kind of organic fertilizer to
the soil. Cow manure is best however it will come with a lot of weeds.
Chicken manure that has been allowed to rest for at least a year is also
Once you have prepared the ground, it is time to plant your seeds.
There are two times of the year that are best for planting poppy seeds. The
Spring and Fall. Poppies are a very hardy plant and they like the cold. So
plant your seeds just after you think the last snow has fallen. If it does
not snow where you live, plant the seeds in the middle of February. It's
easy, just sprinkle or broadcast the seeds where you want them to grow. If
you live in a dry climate, be sure to water on a regular basis. The seeds
should come up between seven and twenty five days, depending on your weather
conditions. The seeds will come up everywhere you planted them. Because the
seeds are so small, some people like to sow the seeds with a mixture of sand
and seed, then broadcast the seeds that way. You will find they won't be
crowded so close together. You can plant them in rows or just plant them
Some people like to thin the plants from eight to ten inches apart when the
seedlings reach a height of five to six inches. If you do thin out the
plants, the remaining poppies will fill out more and produce more seed pods
per plant. When the plants are ten inches tall start to fertilize with a
liquid fertilizer. Alaskan fish fertilizer works well for the organic
gardener. Or you can use Miracle Grow, a common vegetable fertilizer. You
can buy these fertilizers at your local garden store. Be sure to follow the
directions on the water mix. Fertilize and water on a regular basis until
you see the seed pods start to form.
Let nature take over. Your plants will grow long stems with the flower and
seed pod at the end. The flowers last from three to eight days, then the
flower petals drop off. The plant uses all of its remaining energy to
reproduce. The seed pods will grow fat with seeds and eventually the seed
vents will open up to re-seed themselves. This is the time to collect the
seeds for cooking. Save the seeds from the biggest pods for Fall planting.
This is also the time to cut the long stems with their pods for dried flower
Seed heads are frequently used in wreaths you will love the large pods. The
stems dry straight and hard and can be used for a number of things such as:
support sticks for other plants, use in arts and crafts, playing an ancient
Chinese fortune telling game, or simple "pick-up sticks". For cooking, the
seeds are a pantry necessity. Everything from poppy seed cake and muffins,
to an ingredient in herbal butters and as a decorative topping on biscuits
and for making a great poppy seed dressing. Many recipes can be discovered
just by visiting your local library. In some countries, poppy seeds have
been a staple and used to make flour and as an ingredient in most of their
For the Fall planting, plant your seeds in the middle of September and
prepare the soil as I have indicated above. Poppies are very hardy, they
should winter over just fine. However just in case, save about half your
seeds for the Spring planting.
Poppies are beautiful plants and are a show piece for any garden.
However, they do contain alkaloids that are a narcotic. It may be illegal in
your area to grow opium poppies. Check your local laws. It is definitely
illegal to harvest the raw opium these plants produce .I am selling these
seeds to you strictly for beautification and the decorative and cooking
aspects of them. Once you start your own garden of these beauties, you will
never need to buy seeds again!
The history of
these flowers is incredibly interesting and their wonderful versatility make
these a very productive plant to own. I hope you enjoy these beautiful