How to grow Flanders Poppy

Flanders Poppy


Photo - James A. Sugar/

Flanders Poppy (Papaver rhoeas) 

The churning of the soil by horses' hooves and soldiers' boots on the Belgian and French battlegrounds of World War 1 encouraged never-seen-before displays of red Flanders poppy. 

In tribute to the sacrifices made in the war, sow a packet of poppy seed into a bare spot or pot on Anzac Day. There's a bonus - Mr Fothergills is giving 50 cents to Legacy Australia for every packet of Gallipoli Anniversary poppy seeds sold.


Description: poppies are instantly recognisable for their beautiful, papery blooms held above often-hairy stems. The Flanders Poppy is best known as the poppy worn on Remembrance Day. 

Size: the nodding poppy flower heads can reach up to 60cm. Once they have finished flowering their grey-green foliage dies back to a papery brown mound, which is unnoticeable if teamed in a garden bed with another flowering perennial such as salvia.

Cultivation: poppies are hardy and easy to grow, usually from seed. Choose a sunny spot in well-drained soil, and keep them moist.

Special comments: poppy seed can lie dormant for up to 80 years. 


Text: Ally Jackson

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Author: Ally Jackson

Garden Clinic TV