Papaver Not a reference to Lady Bird Johnson, former First Lady famous for promoting roadside beautification, this Ladybird is instead British for ladybug: the four black dots in the center of these fire-engine–red blooms make a fanciful resemblance to the beloved beetle. Compact 1½" delicate single blooms atop wiry 15" stems. This cottage variety, great for edging the flower garden, dates back to 1876. Bloomed June 30 from a May 2 planting. Annual. ③
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Annual. Sensuous luxurious flowers, about 2½–3' tall. Poppies make wondrous cutflowers: choose buds that have straightened up but not quite opened. Immediately sear the cut stem with a flame and put in water. Poppies open after several hours—an austere bouquet in the evening can become a riot of colors the next morning.
Culture: Need light to germinate. Sow outside in spring after frost or sow in fall for early blooms the following summer. Thin to 9–12". Like full sun. Will self sow. ~1,400 to 4,500 seeds/g.
All flowers are open-pollinated except where noted.
Days in parentheses after a variety indicate days to first bloom.
For the latest results of our germination tests, please see the germination page.