Botanical Name: Papaver
Native Origin: Tasmania, Australia
Papaver is an annual cultivar that grows from 90cm to 1.5m tall and has white-to-pink, red, or purple flowers. The plant has a taproot from which the stem develops. The leaves are gray-blue or greenish and are ovate-oblong in shape. The fruit is smooth, round and capsule shaped and can contain up to two thousand tiny seeds, which vary widely in color. A white, milky sap flows throughout the plant.
The poppy is one of the most significant plants in history, having had considerable impact on the human condition and quality of life; both for good and bad. Although it is often believed to have first been cultivated in Asia, the poppy’s original home actually lies in northern Italy, southern Germany and Switzerland, where the plant has been used for at least 4,000 years as evidenced by fossil remains of poppy pods found in Neolithic Swiss lake dwellings. There are reports that the plant is also native to southern France, Spain, and northwestern Africa. It was said to be consumed by the ancient Egyptians, as well as the Greeks, suggesting it was present in both regions.
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Blue Poppy 1000 Seeds | Papaver
Papaver somniferum was used in ancient Egypt, Greece, Germany, and many other parts of the world as a means of inducing sleep, calming nervous anxiety, and treating inflammatory troubles, diarrhea, and coughing. By the 1850s, pure alkaloids, rather than the earlier crude preparations, were commonly prescribed for the relief of aches and pains, coughs, and diarrhea. The seeds of Papaver somniferum have also shown anticancer properties and are used as a tea in traditional folk medicine.