Poppy Pod

Common Names: Poppy Pods, Opium Poppy Pods

Botanical names: Papaver somniferum.

Availability: Summer and Fall fresh, year round dried.

Vase life: 10 to 14 days fresh, many weeks dried.

Storage temperatures: 36 - 41 degrees Fahrenheit.

Ethylene Sensitive: No.

Description: Poppy pods are the seed pods of the opium poppy. The pods are typically oval or round in shape, with a slightly tapered end. When fresh, poppy pods are green, with a smooth, waxy surface. As they mature and dry, the color may fade to a tan or brownish hue. The surface texture can become slightly wrinkled as the pod dries out.

Color: Green when fresh, tan or brown when dry.

Botanical facts: Inside the poppy pod are numerous small seeds embedded within a matrix of a sticky substance known as latex. This latex is the source of opium, a narcotic substance derived from the poppy plant.

Design notes: Poppy Pods are generally used as a dried material. Dried or fresh, they add dramatic impact and lovely texture to a floral design. They make an excellent basing material in contemporary designs.

Purchasing hints: Select undamaged stems and pods.

Conditioning: Cut stem ends with as sharp knife. Hydrate in water mixed with a commercial floral food for two hours before storage or usage.

Additional notes: The Opium Poppy has been used medicinally since ancient times, and its name comes from Latin “somnus” for sleep. The cultivation, possession, and use of opium poppies and their products are regulated in many countries due to the presence of narcotic compounds in the plant. In some areas, growing poppies without a license may be illegal or subject to strict regulations.