Growing Problems With Poppies
Answered by: Inge Poot

Question from: Alan Griffis
Posted on: October 26, 2006

For the last year I have been trying to get these beautiful plants to grow. I plant them, in about 10 days they come up. They get 2-4 leaves on them, are green, are about 1/2 - 3/4 inches high, and then simply stay that way. For anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks they simply stay that way. Then they slowly fall over, dry up and blow away.

I have bought seeds from just about every vendor online, they all say "They should grow" and that’s all the help I get.

I have tried different times of the year, different soils, different watering amounts, different amounts of sunshine. All to no avail. There has to be a reason for them to get to this stage and then give up. Right?

I live in Denver and have been told that should not be a problem. FYI: I pulled one of the plants out to look at the roots, and they were very skinny, maybe twice as long as the plant itself and almost clear, just one root.

Are you planting the seeds in full sun? The plants need full sun. Also you could try checking the pH of your soil. It may be too acid or too alkaline. This would explain the poor root development. Also make sure the soil has been deeply worked and enough humus added to keep it friable. I have noticed that annual poppies do not do well in crusty poor soil.

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