Yes, more poppies. (Previously: Pop Goes the World)
First, some later-flowering breadseed poppies. They are late for various reasons. Some are the last flowers on the bigger plants in the July crop. The dark purples had to fight with rhubarb and broccoli for sunlight. And the whites and lighter coloured forms popped up in a bed that was dug in June, old seeds waiting in the soil who knows how long.
Click on the pictures to see them full-size. And if you would like seed to grow your own poppies, please contact me using the form at the bottom of this post.
Two newly sprouted seedlings (too small for my camera to get a clear look at). The longer, thin leaves appear first. They look like little wings. There is not enough summer left for these ones to grow into plants, and they won’t survive the winter here in zone 3.
The next few are Iceland poppies, Papaver nudicaule. These are self-seeded. Properly biennials, a few will go on for an extra year or two. They are the first poppies to flower in the spring, and the plants continue to send up new blooms (dead-heading may encourage this) well into September. The original bright orange, yellow, and white forms (Lake Louise postcard classics) return every year, from new seedlings, along with mixed colour forms, usually white with an orange blush or brushstrokes of yellow. These are best seen in morning sun when newly opened and alive with bees.
Now these are alpine poppies (Papaver alpinum). They flowered from seed in their first year. The whole plants are smaller and more compact than Iceland poppies, with delicate, downy foliage and dramatically large, floating flowers.
Finally, we come to the Ladybird poppies, Papaver commutatum. I started these in seed trays, moved the little seedlings into pots for a couple weeks, and then, when about 10cm tall and wide, planted them into the garden — in a sunny spot but under a shade I had set up to shelter them from direct sun until they were settled in. These don’t self-seed (in my garden), and whenever I’ve tried direct-sowing, nothing’s come up. So they take some effort and they’re worth it. They like loose, deeply dug garden soil and room to spread out. Pinching out the first stem of buds promotes branching and a full season of the reddest red flowers.
My daughter took some of these pictures — the first five. You can see that her style with the camera is more considered, and more adventurous, than mine.