This flower that so gladly covers
fields is usually connected to Demeter, the goddess of the harvest,
and to the Element of Earth. It was believed that this plant's
presence ensured a good corn harvest (thus its name). I've often wondered if
that was because it's a peaceable substitute for blood. A native
of Europe that has become naturalized in North America, this plant normally has red petals, which were an ingredient
in Syrup of Red Poppy, a sedative and a cough suppressant for children.
The "Shirley" poppy was developed from this wild plant.
The milky juice of this magick herb is sedative, and when fresh, the
flowers smell like opium, but this plant does not contain morphine
or codeine. Top
How to grow it:
In the north, sow in the early spring (surface sow, then lightly
rake where you sowed to trigger germination); in the south, sow in the fall.
Sow on the surface of moist soil (don't cover). Keep moist but not
soggy and at around 60F/15C, and seeds will germinate in 2-4 weeks. This
is also a poppy seed that you can broadcast on the snow, and it
will come up in the spring--I saw this technique in Ken Druse's
wonderful book Making More Plants, tried it, and it definitely
works. This annual
plant gets 18-24"/45-60cm tall and blooms in mid- to late summer.
It prefers full sun but will tolerate partial shade.
The soil should be well-drained. General growing
200 seeds $4.00
Witchcraft & Magic:
© 2004, 2018 Harold A. Roth; No reproduction without permission