If you’ve ever considered saving seeds, but have been too afraid to try, start by saving ornamental poppy seeds. Why? Saving poppy seeds is practically labor-free, is incredibly easy, and can be done in about a minute.
We grew a beautiful variety this year that came unannounced in the mail from Botanical Interests Seeds. It’s called Lauren’s Grape. I’m never one to turn down a gift, especially if it’s purple or burgundy.
Now the flowers are long gone, and the dry seed pods remain, populating the garden in all their brown bulbous glory. It’s time to harvest the seeds for continued joy in years to come.
Harvesting seed is so easy. Just cut off the seed pods and keep them upright.
Note the holes at the top of the seed pod, just underneath the crown (the part that looks like a toupee). If you tip the pod over, the seeds come pouring out the holes.
Poppy seeds are tiny, so be sure to collect them in a bowl. Or just sprinkle them back into the garden. The seeds require light to germinate, so you don’t even need to bury them. It’s that simple.
We stored our seeds in the original seed envelope, but separate from the original seeds (envelope in an envelope). Next year we’ll plant both to see how they differ, if at all.
Hey Gardenerds, have you saved seeds lately? Share your experiences here.
This Post Has 5 Comments
I have seeds in the pod… from 7 years ago, are they still good?
It depends on how they’ve been stored. If they were in a cool, dark, and dry place, then they are probably still viable. If they were stored in a sunny, warm, damp location, probably not. In any case, toss them into the garden when the time is right and see what comes up.
If a friend gives you a poppy flower (with the petals still on), still on the stem (as if she just pulled it out of her garden). Am I able to just plant it, or could I take the petals off and try to get the seeds?
HI Stephanie, If your friend gave you a blooming poppy, the seeds haven’t developed yet, and depending on the type of poppy they probably won’t develop before the flower dies. Likewise, the flower won’t set roots if you plant it in soil. Best thing to do is put it in water and enjoy it while it blooms. Buy some seeds to grow your own poppies and they will set seed over and over again in your garden to return year after year.
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