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Meconopsis grandisTibetan Blue Poppy (Mconopsis grandis) Info
Despite its name, this Moon herb is the national flower of Bhutan, where it grows in large stands on the edges of yak pastures. Tibetan blue poppy gets 2 feet high and its stems have 4-5 flowers 3-5 inches wide in early summer. The flowers are sky blue unless soil is alkaline, in which case they will be wine purple; they are more cupped than the flowers of M. betonicifolia. Mulch with bark or composted pine needles to increase soil acidity and preserve soil moisture.  Tibetan blue poppy needs a cool, rainy summer, as in the Pacific Northwest, coastal California, the mountains (will grow in NC mountains, for instance), Canada, or the UK. They suffer if the temps go over 80F.  They can survive harsh winters if they have a good snow covering, but if the summer is hot or dry, they will only live one year. Top

How to grow Tibetan Blue Poppy:  Sow in a paper towel that has been wet and wrung out. Fold seeds inside the towel and put in a baggie. Store in fridge for 4 weeks. Then gently press the seed into the surface of wet seed-growing medium--this seed requires light for germination (but no sun!). Growing temperatures should be no more than 65F/18C. Bottom water or gently mist; don't let it dry out.  Start 2-3 months before your last frost date to take advantage of the coolest part of your year or sow outside in fall. This plant hates heat and is perennial only in climates with cool summers. As with any poppy, watch for damping off; scant sowing, good ventilation, or a sterile soil mix like vermiculite and peat help prevent that. Transplant to rich, moist soil (dig in plenty of Black Cow and some peat for acidity) and dappled shade or morning sun and afternoon shade).  The flower's coloring is connected with the soil pH--a more acid (peaty) soil means more blue coloration.  Mulch well to keep soil moist.  Watch out for slugs.  Keep well fertilized and deadhead to promote more flowers.  The flowers will develop into seed-filled pods.  Divide the plants every third year. General growing info Top

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2004, 2014 Harold A. Roth; No reproduction without permission