Thursday, January 10, 2013

California poppy sprouting


I have been like Johnny Appleseed these last few weeks and dispersed some of my California poppy seeds which I have collected. I don't know what subspecies these are but they are the yellow variants which grow in my garden. Family Papaveraceae, species Eschscholzia californica. These are drought-tolerant but they seem to need rain to kick them off to a good start, which we've had. It's also been chilly for us, which is around 40 F at the worst. It seems they like the colder weather for germinating.

I find poppy seedlings to be distinctive, with the two-pronged needle like cotyledons. You can see the more classic feathery look emerging. They seem to like disturbed soil. I also find they seem to pop up after a winter rain, classic fire ecology traits for living in the chapparal, our native flora.

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