California poppy: A Bit of Botany
a little bit of botany about california poppy

Eschscholzia californica is a perennial or annual of the Papaveraceae family, growing to 5–60 in (13–150 cm) tall, with alternately branching glaucous blue-green foliage. The leaves are ternately divided into round, lobed segments. The flowers are solitary on long stems, silky-textured, with four petals, each petal 2 to 6 cm (0.79 to 2.4 in) long and broad; flower color ranges from yellow to orange, with flowering from February to September. The petals close at night or in cold, windy weather and open again the following morning, although they may remain closed in cloudy weather. The fruit is a slender, dehiscent capsule 3 to 9 cm (1.2 to 3.5 in) long, which splits in two to release the numerous small black or dark brown seeds.

common names & nomenclature
The common name copa de oro means "cup of gold" and refers to the golden flower color.

Also known as:
california poppy, golden poppy, california sunlight, flame flower, copa de oro, cup of gold

California Poppy, the state flower of California
California poppy: Where in the World
habitat and range for california poppy

California poppy is native to the United States and Mexico.

California poppy: Cultivation & Harvesting
considerations for growing and harvesting california poppy

California poppy thrives in dry, sandy areas, and will stand up well to heat. Does best in full sun, can be good for outdoor containers, rock gardens or xeriscapes.

California poppy grows best in sandy, well-drained, poor soil.

This plant does not transplant well and should be grown from seeds scattered outdoors in the spring when the soil becomes workable. Scatter the seeds where the plants are desired for summer bloom. This plant may seem like it is a perennial, coming back in the same place every year due to self-seeding. However, self-seeding may not produce plants identical to the initial planted variety. Germinates in 7-14 days.

Harvest California poppy leaves, stems and flowers during the growing season, use fresh or dried.

Dry the leaves, stems and flowers and store as smaller cut pieces in airtight containers in a cool, dry place.

California poppy: The Rest of the Story
california poppy history, folklore, literature & more

butcher's broom for your blood vessels
California poppy (Eschscholzia californica) is a member of the poppy family of flowering plants found throughout the western U.S. It is particularly prolific in California, where the plant was designated the state flower in 1903 and subsequently celebrated each April 6th on California Poppy Day. The plant is also known as flame flower and copa de oro, which means "cup of gold." Unlike many other state flowers, it is not illegal to harvest the plant, unless you were to pluck it from private property. In fact, the species is quite invasive and resistant to disease, although it has been displaced in certain areas by wild grasses.

Another misconception about California poppy is that the plant contains opium when it does not. The morphine-like drug is obtained from a completely different genus and species of plant called the opium poppy. However, California poppy does contain certain alkaloids that lend the plant mild sedative qualities.