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Sow heirloom Flanders poppy seeds for bright red summer colour in nearly any soil. Flanders poppies are quite drought tolerant, so they are useful in xeriscaping schemes. They self sow fairly reliably without ever becoming weedy.
It's a good choice for any areas where grasses are allowed to grow tall in summer, with the poppies growing to around 60cm (24") tall. Gather the dried seed heads in late summer for decorative dried flower arrangements. Plants produce abundant tiny seeds that are very easy to gather and give as gifts. This species is mildly toxic to grazing animals, but its acrid taste puts most animals off anyway. So it is a very useful deer resistant variety that looks spectacular when planted in large areas.
Exposure Full-sun to partial shade
Start perennial poppies outdoors in early spring, when some chance of frost is still a possibility. Start annual varieties outdoors at the same time in Zones 3-7. In Zones 8-10, the best bet is to direct sow in the fall.
Poppies are famously difficult to transplant, so starting them indoors is not recommended. If absolutely necessary, use peat or coir pots, and maintain a soil temperature of 12°C (55°F). Seeds will sprout in 20-30 days.
Sow on the surface of the soil, or barely cover seeds. Thin to a minimum of 15cm (6″) apart.
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