Oriental poppies (Papaver orientale)

– Posted in: Miscellaneous

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

What differentiates a bulb from a perennial plant is that the nourishment for the flower is stored within the bulb itself.…There is something miraculous about the way that a little grenade of dried up tissue can explode into a complete flower.

~Monty Don in The Complete Gardener pp. 142

4 Comments… add one

Kathy Purdy June 2, 2011, 1:24 pm

If that is so, I would find some way to mark them. I am not 100% sure my Oriental poppies are above ground in August.

Denise Wetzel June 1, 2011, 7:40 pm

I had oriental poppies like this at my grandmother’s house and have tried repeatly to transplant some to our new home with no luck. I have tried to plant the entire plant ( wilts before I can even get it in the ground) I’ve tried seeds (no luck) I’ve tried differant times of the year, with and without lots of soil around the roots, I cannot figure out what I am doing wrong…..HELP! I live in northeastern PA. transplanting from sandy soil to heavy clay that doesn’t drain well.

Kathy Purdy June 1, 2011, 8:33 pm

I have managed to do it, but I was only moving a plant from one part of my yard to the other. I have clay soil, too. I amend all my flower beds with organic matter such as well rotted manure or compost. It is still clay soil, but there is no standing water after a good soaking rain. They will rot in standing water. Oriental poppies slowly go dormant after they bloom, and then send up new foliage in the fall. I would try to dig them up as they are going dormant. Keep the roots wrapped in damp newspaper for the trip to your house, and plant as soon as you get home. (That means you already have their new home prepared, obviously.) Water only if you see other plants in your garden wilting. Don’t be too upset if you see the poppies wilting and even dying back. They naturally go dormant anyway. You will know you’ve succeeded if they put up new foliage in autumn, but they may wait until the following spring. It’s awful hard to get the entire root, but I don’t think you need to. Nurserymen propagate poppies from root cuttings–just a piece of the root. If my method doesn’t work for you, investigate root cuttings.

Denise Wetzel June 2, 2011, 9:13 am

thanks, I will try it again. I snooped around on the web a bit after I post this and learned that August seems to be the month they recommend to transplant poppies.

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