Poppies (Papaver) are easy-to-grow old-fashioned flowers that enjoy sunlight. Oriental poppies (P. orientale) are the most common type and blooms show single or double rows of four to six petals. In the landscape, poppies are deer-resistant and drought tolerant. For the best results when you choose poppies for cut flowers, clip them just before the buds blossom and let them mature in the vase.

Atypical Orientals

Atypical Oriental poppies feature unusual petals. “Place Pigalle” is a dwarf selection that begets blossoms in ancient through mid-summer with white crinkled petals edged in a salmon-red ruffle and grows 18 to 20 inches tall. “Pink Ruffles” displays deeply fringed salmon-pink petals with oblong black spots near the eye and also grows 27 to 29 inches tall. Both these atypical Oriental poppies have black eyes and also develop in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 2 through 9.

Unique Blossoms for Rocky Places

Double Spanish poppies (P. rupifragum) favor rock gardens and ground covered with gravel in spaces without warm and humid summers. These double blossoms have classic broad petals on the outside and a ring of many narrower petals near their eyes that are crocheted. The range “Double Tangerine Gem” boasts double sherbet-orange petals and grows 12 to 16 inches tall. It blossoms from late spring through late summer and grows in USDA zones 6 through 9.

Sturdier Than Other Poppies

“Heartbeat” is a super poppy that’s the result of 30 years of selective breeding. In comparison to other poppies, it has larger blossoms with more lives and contains thicker petals which don’t get as easily damaged from bad weather. “Heartbeat” includes crimson-red petals with black eyes, which reaches 27 to 29 inches tall and grows in USDA zones 3 through 9.

Long-Bearing in Partial Shade

Iceland poppies (P. nudicaule) are briefer than Oriental poppies and have bigger blossoms, but feature a more flowering time you can make the most from by clipping faded flowers to make way for new ones. The blossoms come from late spring through early autumn in a range of colors such as cream, orange and salmon with yellow eyes. Iceland poppies hit 12 to 18 inches tall and develop in USDA hardiness zones 2 through 9. More flexible than Oriental poppies, it is possible to develop Iceland poppies in partial shade.

Excellent for High Altitudes

Alpine poppy hybrids (P. alpinum) are compact plants which sprout shorter stems than Oriental poppies and thrive in high altitudes. They display flowers in various colors such as light pink, yellow and white with yellow eyes. Alpine poppy hybrids develop 6 to 10 inches tall, are just the perfect selection for containers or alpine troughs and grow in USDA zones 3 through 9.

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