How to sow and care for California poppy?

It lights up the garden like no other with its dazzling bloom! Very easy to grow, the California poppy grows in poor soil and requires very little maintenance to bloom, covering the garden all summer with its beautiful bright orange flowers. This ideal plant for beginners can even reseed itself abundantly in the garden. Enjoy!

How to sow and care for California poppy?
How to sow and care for California poppy?

The California poppy, a simple plant with undeniable charm

Escholtzia californicabetter known as ‘California poppy‘ is an annual plant producing finely cut bluish-green foliage. The cupped flowers are very bright. Usually bright orange, yellow, white (‘Alba‘) red (‘Red Chief‘single-flowered or ‘Cherry Swirl‘, semi-double), but also in pastel shades (pink, peach…), even two-tone at ‘Thai Silk Fire Bush‘ which presents an intense red color streaked with orange.

Note that this pretty plant also has a therapeutic use in the treatment of anxiety and insomnia.

When and how to sow the California poppy?

The California poppy is sown in the garden when temperatures stabilize around 15°C in the spring or in October in regions with a mild climate. Pre-sowing in boxes is not recommended because the taproot does not tolerate transplanting well.

Sowing can be staggered every 15 days to achieve flowering over a longer period.

This plant loves heat, full sun and enjoys well-drained soil, even poor. It is ideal for adorning an embankment, a rockery or a semi-wild area. On the edge, it will brilliantly illuminate the scene.

  • Prepare the ground by removing the weeds.

  • Make a false sowing 15 days before the real one in order to eliminate new weeds as soon as they germinate, which will undoubtedly grow. Hoe them, rake the ground then broadcast for a natural result, or, to avoid thinning, sow each seed in a hole half a centimeter deep, spacing them 10 cm apart.

  • Plug the holes then water.

  • If you sowed on the fly, cover the seedling with half a centimeter of soil then seal with the back of a rake.

  • Germination can take a fortnight, remember to water in fine rain as soon as the soil dries to promote germination.

California Poppy Care

If you have sown on the broadcast, thin out to keep only one plant every 10 cm.

Water regularly to ensure recovery, once the plant is well established, it will tolerate drought perfectly. In the south of the country, if it really lasts, remember to water once every 10 days.

Remove faded flowers to induce the appearance of new flower buds. At the end of the season, let the plant produce seeds to harvest them or allow nature to disperse them in your garden!

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Source: Au Jardin, conseils en jardinage by

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