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I have a rusty old helmet in which I'd like to grow field poppies, Ive tried a couple of times but the seed has not germinated. Can anyone help me to achieve my 2014 tribute hanging basket? 

nutcutlet

They're annuals so you don't want to germinate them this year unless it's a practice run. Poppy seeds hang around for years and can germinate when soil is disturbed (as in battlefields)

Some of the best are sown and germinate in late summer, overwinter where they are and flower the next year

fidgetbones

They need light to germinate. Don't cover them, just sprinkle on top.  There is currently a field full next to the M1 just after J 26 northbound. I didn't get a pic- I was doing 70mph at the time.

fidgetbones

sandy soil. shouldn't need fertiliser.

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Should I grow them in a tray and transplant, or sow in position?

Alternatively, is it possible to buy field poppy plants? I haven't seen any for sale and I suspect readers will say they are so easy to grow, but I've sown several packets of seed and not a single seed germinated. Is there an idiots guide or failproof system?

fidgetbones

I don't think they will transplant. General rule is to sow in situ and then thin. do you know anyone with a plant you can take fresh seeds off? I save my own from year to year.

I can't think of anyone with a plant and I assume it is illegal to take seed from the roadside. Surely seed from a reputable supplier should be ok? 

Dovefromabove

It is perfectly legal to gather a few seeds of non-endangered plants from the wild.  If they are in a field or similar you should of course ask the land-owner's permission and be sure to follow the Country Code.

Information and some suppliers of wildflower seeds here http://theseedsite.co.uk/wildflowers.html

 

Bookertoo

What you may not do at the roadside re plants is dig them up - but seeds are OK - just please don't get run over in your excitement!

Rosie31

Hi Malcolm - you should be able to buy plants if you really can't get them to germinate.  If you go to the RHS website, and click on 'Plants' then 'plant finder', and enter in the name 'papaver rhoeas', you'll see a list of nurseries that supply them (including some mail order options).  I'd suggest you contact those nurseries to check out if they're likley to have any in stock at the time you want them in 2014.....as your 'just in case' back up plan!

I sympathise, I tried to grow poppies in my flowerbed last year and had no luck at all.  I think the soil was too rich and they were overshadowed by other plants.  Big sigh.  Live and learn!

 

Topbird

I garden on heavy clay & only have poppies poppying up (sorrry!!) in the areas where the soil is poorest and driest and in my gravel drive - not where the soil is rich and wet.

I think, therefore, that you could try mixing quite a bit of sand and grit into the compost in the helmet and keeping it on the dry side. Sow on the surface.  Are there any drainage holes? - if not you will have to be very careful not to let the soil get waterlogged.

Experiment this year to get it right for next.

Nice idea ...

Molly1966
fidgetbones wrote (see)

They need light to germinate. Don't cover them, just sprinkle on top.  There is currently a field full next to the M1 just after J 26 northbound. I didn't get a pic- I was doing 70mph at the time.

 Too Funny..

Molly1966
Malcolm Nicholson2 wrote (see)

Should I grow them in a tray and transplant, or sow in position?

Alternatively, is it possible to buy field poppy plants? I haven't seen any for sale and I suspect readers will say they are so easy to grow, but I've sown several packets of seed and not a single seed germinated. Is there an idiots guide or failproof system?

 

I have brought some from my local nursery.  Potted, in flower, ready for transplanting in my garden. They look fantastic...

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I looked for Poppy plants at several local nurseries yesterday, but no Joy.  There is still a few I haven't tried yet.

I now have several packets of seed, so fingers crossed.

nutcutlet

Lots of poppies at our GC but none of them are field poppies

I love poppies, but live on the coast. I have not had any sucess growing them, since moving here. Such a pity, think I shall have to move inland more.

I'm on the Isle of Wight and Poppies are currently tormenting me by growing wild in fields and by the roadside.

I've collected a few dry seed heads and have also  purchased a packet of 'Flanders', half of which I intend to sow in September and October, the rest in April and May. 

Fingers crossed.

I shall keep trying. I must buy some packets of Flanders, I love them. Will have to look for a more sheltered spot, in which to plant them. I noticed a neighbour is growing the larger ragged looking poppies and they are beautiful! I have collected a few seed heads from him and will give theses a bash. I grew them when I lived in Lincolnshire and they were stunning! Maybe there's hope yet, especially if the weather starts returning to the summers we used to have.

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