Meconopsis Visual Reference Guide. Includes Photos, Taxonomy And Cultivation Information.
Sunday, 21 June 2015
In north Caithness I have large planting of various big blue poppies for seed. This is a varition on the tetraploid Lingholm. Blues in Meconopsis can vary from year to year and I suspect temperature is involved. In the north we have had a long cold spring and so far only two pleasantly warm days of summer!
Nothing what so ever to do with Meconopsis! Many years ago one of my daughters was working in New Zealand and as always was asked to bring me back interesting seed. It has taken all these years to grow into a tree and flower. It is the Kowhai tree. This is a native legume Sophora tetaptera - the large leaved kowhai. This genus has the reputation in the United Kingdom of not being fully hardy especially when young. It has thrived in our garden near the sea on the east coast of Scotland and the flowers up to 6 cms. long are most spectacular.
Total heartbreak. This was a double Meconopsis punicea in the garden. Not sure compared to the true species that it is anything like so attractive - I find many double forms of wild flowers in the garden a bit over flamboyant. Plagued by mice earlier now it was the turn of wood pigeons. The garden is already lush and in good growth with at least 10 species of Meconopsis as rosettes or in flower. On Thursday I did my daily rounds and found every flower, every seed pod and every bud on every single Meconopsis punicea had been eaten by wood pigeons (Columba palumbus). Nothing else was touched and there were 4 separate planting of punicea. Now there will be no seed. I did give plants away to 3 botanic gardens last year so hopefully they have not all been molested by this plague species - totally out of control in the U.K. There was poor germination this year of limited seed but I do have about 40 seedlings but it is having nothing to sow for next years plants that it so sad since it is normally biennial. The only positive thing to come out of this is JUST MAYBE they will either develop new flower buds for later in the summer or perhaps just possibly wait and flower next year.