sarah's favourite july poppies

Watch as Sarah shares her favourite varieties of poppies that flower throughout July.

Who couldn’t love poppies, I mean just look at them, they are, they’re the sweetest, simplest flowers and they’re just adorable. And they come in a good range too, so this is the classic corn poppy for Remembrance Day, and that’s the wild one, papaver rhoeas, and increasingly there are so many lovely cultivars, this is one that’s just self-sown here but there’s a beautiful, grey one at the moment that hasn’t yet flowered called ‘Amazing Grey’; they look so ethereal but actually if you sear the stem ends in boiling water they’ll last two or three days in a vase and I just love them, the Shirley poppy, this is a self-seeded baby of, and, you know they’re just classic and beautiful.

This is papaver somniferum, the opium poppy, and it comes in a range of fluffiness, from doubles to singles or rather singles to doubles, this in fact was the plant that was here when we first came, and so we call it the Perch Hill poppy, and it just self-seeds every year and I love it. This is just a dark plum version, and it again comes in singles and doubles, but they’re beautiful, they just spread themselves, they’re covered in bees, full of pollen, they’re just absolutely stunning June, July summer flowers.

And then the Californian poppies, these grow in really arid conditions so they’re incredibly drought resistant which is good with climate change and again they come in every sort of range of colours; oranges, yellows, creams, the whole lot really. They’re called Eschscholzias, the Californian poppy.

And then these are papaver nudicaules, the Icelands. So all those are annual, these are actually biennial and you sow them in June and July and they flower for ages the following year, and I love that as a cut flower.

And then the final one, papaver rupifragum is actually perennial. I haven’t got an oriental poppy in flower here because they flower in early June and they’re over quite quickly. I love them but they are transient, things like ‘Patty’s Plum’, but papaver rupifragum along with the meconopsis, the Welsh poppy flower all the way through summer into autumn. Just perfect.

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