raspberryfool: (Raspberryfool)
[personal profile] raspberryfool
One of the joys of summer in my garden is papaver somniferum, commonly known as the opium poppy. Each spring I sprinkle its seeds over the bare, cold earth. These jewel-like specimens rewarded me by brightening up my potato patch this summer...

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This garden beauty's white, sticky latex oozes out of the seed head when it's scored with a knife. The latex is harvested for its opium. It's also grown for its seeds, which are used in breads and cakes, and is the only papaver species with edible seeds.

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This big, red specimin popped up by my rose bush. I've been wanting these for ages!

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However I'm still jealous of the allotment holders, who get to enjoy these gorgeous, red pom-pom types close-up!

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It's perfectly legal to grow papaver soniferum in the UK, as long as you're not starting your own cocaine farm!
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