We have had frost overnight for 3 nights in a row...a lot of my poppy pods are still green, if I do have to bring them in already to dry upside down will the seeds that fall be viable? I love poppies but this is my 1st year growing them. I live in NE MN. Thanks
The way I dry these (very small seeds like grains of sand) is as you say. hang them upside down, this has to be in a cool/light (not toooo cold) place, with air circulating freely, remove all the greenery, be careful as they give out white liquid that some people find makes the skin itchy, soon as the seed-heads look like they are starting to change colour (brownish) place a paper bag over the seed-head, tie the bag in place either elastic band or cotton thread will do, don't tie too tight, all you need is keep the bag in place, the seeds when dried and ready to explode ha, ha, ha, into the bag, you will catch them all, after several weeks, you can check each day to make sure you have all the seeds.
Either sprinkle the seeds on TOP of seed compost in trays (Don't cover the seeds as these seeds are too small) to moisten the compost, pop the tray into shallow water in kitchen basin / sink, soon as the compost changes colour to darker brown, lift the tray out of the water and let it drain, this way you don't wash the tiny seeds away with spray from water can.
You can also store your dried seeds after collection in used letter paper envelopes, mark name, when gathered when to plant on envelope, sew as before, Autumn sowing will give you flowering plants next summer, spring sowing the flowers will prob be the following year, this is for perennial Poppies, for Annual Poppies, spring sowing is perfect and should flower same year.
Happy gardening, WeeNel.
Yes the seeds will dry out in the paper, BUT they will rot or get moldy IF in plastic bags etc. You can winter sow Poppy seeds if done in-doors too, this helps prevent diseases, why not try sowing some winter and save some for spring sow, this way you will get good knowledge of what to do winter and spring. the seeds are free so wont cost you a penny.
Good luck, lets know how it goes.