University of Florida

California Poppy

Bright and cheerful, but often overlooked, the California poppy is an annual whose seeds should be planted in the fall—you'll be rewarded with lovely blooms in the spring. Its pretty, paper-like flowers come in bright cheerful colors like red, yellow, and pink.

Choose varieties suited for your area, and start seeds in the fall for spring blooms. You can sow them directly in the ground, or in small pots or cell packs. Aphids may feed on the tender new shoots, so watch for them and use a horticultural soap spray as needed.

The poppy is fairly drought-tolerant, but grows best with weekly waterings. Your poppies may be damaged by severe freezes, but usually grow back from buds near the ground. The California poppy will grow to around eighteen inches tall, and may need to be trimmed to keep it neat.

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