Plant Now: Iceland Poppies

Iceland poppies (Papaver nudicaule) are short-lived perennials that are usually grown as annuals. They’re hardy plants that bloom in winter and early spring.

They’re stunningly beautiful up close, with their tissue-paper blooms and yellow stamens that surround a prominent central pistil. Both stalks and buds are covered in hairs, the stalk often arched over, with its bud pointing downwards. When the bud splits open, the stem straightens (though not always) and a beautiful bright or pale coloured flower is revealed. It’s amazing to watch, and equally amazing when you have a whole bed of these wonderful blooms.

Iceland poppies can be planted by seed or seedlings, though it may be a couple of months yet before you find the seedlings in the garden centres. Sow the seeds now ready for transplanting in a month or two.

Plant in a limed, free-draining soil in full sun. Water well to maintain growth. Iceland poppies are excellent cut flowers.

Photo credits, from top to bottom: Datura; Floret FlowersBlue Cloud Farm; Blue Cloud Farm; Bloom & Co.


  1. I love Iceland poppies too, and always try to have them in the garden over winter; they really brighten up my garden. I am just going out into the garden to prick out my seedlings.
    When I pick them I usually burn the ends of the stalks, is this necessary or an old wives tale?

  2. Julia O'Sullivan says:

    Thankyou, Jane, for the reminder to sow these lovely poppy seeds. I love them and they remind me of my wonderful grandmother who always grew Iceland Poppy’s in her garden. I really enjoy getting your posts.

  3. Son preciosas, no las conocía pero miraré si las encuentro y si son dificiles de cultivar 😀

Speak Your Mind