This site is for people who like plants -- growers, enthusiasts, aesthetes, novices and professionals, those who appreciate wild things and those who appreciate the cultivated. I garden in Chelsea, and I've been visiting people's yards for 20+ years in the course of my work. My goal is to make this blog a community project, so if you share my interests, please consider becoming a participant and contributing content -- Guerin. Info:

Monday, May 30, 2011

Meconopsis for the masses

Like a lot of people, when I first saw a picture of the blue Himalayan poppies of the genus Meconopsis, I had to try my hand at them. I've never had a plant die to quickly -- I think it started to shrivel as soon as it read the mailing label at the originating nursery. I'm not the only one to have that experience. It got so out of control that Heronswood Nursery made it a policy NOT to sell and ship specimens to Michigan.

There is one attractive member of the genus that is content to grow and reproduce here. It's very easy from seed. It's just not blue. The plant is Meconopsis cambrica, known as the Welsh poppy, and it's the only member of genus from Europe. (I read that if botanists were to start all over again, they wouldn't include it in the genus, but I don't know from those things). The Welsh poppy is normally yellow but comes in orange and red forms, it seeds around lightly, it persists in the garden, it doesn't need full sun, it looks nice . . . go get yourself some.

If you are interesting in learning more about the genus, check out It's not just in bread, beer and bacon where the Brits are miles ahead of us. 

1 comment:

  1. ordered some seeds of the lingholm hybrid, we'll see how that goes....