Papaver somniferum Hen and Chickens - Hens and chicks Poppy

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Botanical nomenclature: papaver hen and chicks
Growing up: hen and chicks
Common name: poppy chicks and chicks, breadseed poppy, bread seed poppy
Family: papaveraceae
Height: 80 – 90 cm
Brightness: full sun, partial shading
Climate: see description below
-> 1 gram = ~2200 seeds *


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This ancient form of poppy produces the most unusual seed crown among all poppies. The main pod is surrounded by a mass of smaller pods giving the impression of a mother hen and her chicks.

Papaver hens and chicks are mainly grown by their curious seed pods that are extremely decorative and widely exploited for fresh and dried flower arrangements; often these pods are dyed to distinct dry arrangements and look beautiful.

The large flowers are of unique petals that can come in shades of lavender to reddish pink to shades of purple and can sometimes come mixed in two shades within that range.

Poppies are often highly appreciated in photos, through films that bring us back to the classic gardens and the enchanting landscapes that give us roads all over the world.

After flowering, their seed pods are the true spectacle for this variety, they are widely used for composition in floral arrangements and interior decoration.

The species is demanding in well drained soil, planting in full sun in temperate and partly shaded to very hot climates is most appropriate.

Poppies prefer a cooler environment for the germinative phase and warmer for their stage of growth and maturity ..

Initial planting done every 3 to 4 weeks apart will ensure an eternally flowery and colorful garden year-round. The plant self-sows after the first planting; reserve a special space for this species because the flowers and seed pods are extremely ornamental.

Other information:
The papaver varieties are commonly known as bread seed poppies, the plants are the source of commercial seeds used in baking, salad dressings, stuffing crepes, candies, strudel and etc.

Very fresh seeds, under appropriate conditions, the seeds usually germinate within 20 – 30 days and bloom in the first year in cultivation.

Additional information

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