Blue Nepal Poppy (Meconopsis wallichii) Info Poppies are
Moon plants, and this perennial poppy from the Himalayas shows the Moon influence
in its love of moisture, its juicy leaves, and its translucent flowers.
It forms a large rosette of rough leaves that can be 20 inches long
in the first 2-3 years. Then a thick stem grows up to six feet/2 m high.
The stem can have up to 30 sky blue or purplish blue flowers that
open in June and July. Once it flowers and makes seed pods, it dies,
so make sure to collect the seeds from your plant. This plant can
bloom the first year, but then it is treated like an annual.
How to grow Blue Nepal 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 on Winter Solstice (see
the Solstice Sowing page). 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). 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 poppy info.