Guide to growing California poppy Eschscholzia



Although members of the Eschscholzia genus are perennials they are usually grown as annuals in the garden.

These poppies can reach 30 to 60 cm in height and bear cup like flowers of yellow, orange or white from the middle of spring to the middle of summer.

They make good plants for growing in borders.

One of the common names for Eschscholzia is California poppy.

California Poppy

California Poppy - Eschscholzia californica by MShade; creative commons.

Eschscholzia californica

Eschscholzia californica - California poppy by Mikebaird; creative commons.


Quick Eschscholzia Growing Guide and Facts

Common Names: California Poppy, Tufted Poppy, Frying Pans, San Benito Poppy.
Life Cycle: Hardy perennial grown as a hardy annual by gardeners.
Height: 4 to 24 inches (10 to 60 cm).
Native: North and Central America.
Growing Region: Zones 1 to 10. As a perennial in 8 to 10.
Flowers: Mid-spring, summer and autumn.
Flower Details: Yellow, orange. Four Petals. Fragrant.
Foliage: Deeply cut. Hairless or Blueish-grey and waxy. Lanceolate.
Sow Outside: 1/4 inch (6mm). Annuals: following last frost. Perennials: before last frost or late autumn. Spacing 6 to 10 inches (15 to 26 cm).
Sow Inside: Use Peat pots. Germination time: two to three weeks. Temperature 60°F (16°C). Three weeks before expected last frost. Transplant outdoors following the last frost.
Requirements: Full sunlight. Good drainage. Average soils. Regular watering. Deadhead.

How to grow California poppy (Eschscholzia)

It is best to grow Eschscholzia members outdoors. When growing California poppies the seeds should be sown at about 6 mm in the autumn or after the last frost of spring. The seeds usually take about three weeks to germinate. They should be sown into an area that is sunny and has good drainage. California poppies like to grow in a soil that is average, so nothing special is required.

Caring for Eschscholzia in the garden

Once growing they require watering in prolonged dry spells and extended flowering of the poppies can be had by removing the flowering heads once they have finished flowering.


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